SIIM '09: Bridging Imaging & Image-Dependent Departments
Building bridges between imaging and other image- and report-dependent departments is the focus of the annual meeting of the Society for Imaging Informatics in Medicine (SIIM) that rolls into Charlotte, N.C., from June 4 to 7. Four days of educational sessions and discussions explore developments in the field of imaging informatics and the role of this field in building a bridge between radiology and other medical disciplines. This year’s program has been restructured and updated to offer different types of learning and a more interactive focus with an emphasis on problem-solving and solutions users can take home to their facilities.

The 2009 SIIM program has been re-structured to spotlight core focus areas in nine learning tracks and the tools for implementing solutions for attendees to take back home and share with colleagues. The nine tracks include: Basics of Imaging Informatics; Communicating Results; Image Acquisition and Management; Advanced Visualization; Enterprise Imaging; PACS Operations; Breast Imaging Informatics; Imaging Center PACS; and Interoperability and Integration. They are each divided into three components—an educational session, a scientific session and an applied learning session.

Among the session objectives is the communication of imaging study results and understanding the multiple interlocking communication cycles beginning with order entry through final result delivery. Also to be discussed are the implications of storing images for post-processing using CAD and high-end image processing applications, as well as the economic principles of 3D labs. 

Among some of the learning track highlights are:

Thursday, June 4th

“Professionalism in the Radiology Reading Room: Respect for Patients in the Era of Radiology at a Distance” at 1:45 p.m.; “Design Classification System for Computer-Aided Diagnosis in CT Colonography” at 11:00 a.m.; and “Understanding Image Quality in a Digital Environment” at 4:15 p.m.

In a separate general session taking place on June  4th, presenters will simulate a demonstration of the multiple interlocking communications cycles in medical imaging from order entry through final result delivery. Deficiencies in current state-of-the-art communication will be pointed out, solutions using technology enhancements and workflow changes will be proposed and ideal communication workflow will be demonstrated.

Friday, June 5th

“Evaluating the Effect of a Voice-Controlled PACS Workstation on Radiologist Performance” at 1:30 p.m., “Evaluation of a Collaboration Platform for Interactive Diagnosis between Radiology and Pathology” at 8:45 a.m., “PACS Audit Data: It’s Not Just for HIPAA Anymore” at 4:30 p.m.; and “Why Are We Still Entering Data Manually? Workflow in the Era of IHE” at 3:30 p.m.

Saturday, June 6th

“PACS Workflow and IT Infrastructure within an Imaging Center Environment” at 10:15 a.m.; “Cross-Enterprise Image Sharing and Accessibility Panel” at 1:30 p.m.; and “Advanced Integration Strategies: from DICOM and HL7 to IHE and SOA” at 10:15 a.m.

In addition to the learning tracks, Henry Petroski, PhD, professor of civil engineering and professor of history from Duke University, is presenting the keynote lecture of Saturday, June 6th on looking for, designing, implementing, and improving tools and applications to deal with the massive amount of image data generated in the industry. For the closing general session, a panel of experts from the user and vendor communities will discuss how imaging IT should be properly leveraged to enhance the relevance and value of service providers rather than accelerate their commodization.

During the applied learning sessions, participants explore techniques and tools first-hand. Sessions are smaller to allow knowledge exchange in a collegial setting and to foster mentoring relationships. Sessions take several formats to explore practical imaging informatics solutions, including learning labs, interactive demos, virtual tour videos, plug fests, roundtable discussions and debates. The participants will discuss topics, including PACS/RIS replacement, IHE vs. SOA, breast imaging IHE Connectathon and imaging ownership.

This year’s program also includes 43 abstracts presented as papers in seven scientific sessions incorporated into the SIIM 2009 learning tracks. The scientific program also features poster and demonstration exhibits and the SIIM Research & Development Symposium.

On June 6th, Richard H. Wiggins, III, MD, from the University of Utah Health Sciences Center and Wyatt M. Tellis, PhD, from the University of California, San Francisco, will present a roving tour of the SIIM 2009 Posters and Demonstrations Session at 12:30 p.m. Attendees can accompany the 2009 scientific program co-chairs, as they postulate the participants’ methodologies, provide constructive criticism and discuss the positive attributes of this year’s presenters.

The posters will include such topics as “Automated Computer-Aided Detection and Visualization of Endotracheal Tube Placement in ICU Chest Images,” “Improving Patient Satisfaction in the Outpatient Registration using Patient Worklists and Personal Pagers,” “Migrating from an Integrated RIS/PACS Platform to Two Separate Systems,” and “Using Data Mining to Discover Image Quality Information in Medical Image Databases.”