- Hospitals today have to deal with an assortment of
disparate, standalone systems that have different
capabilities and functions and are often inefficient,
fragmented and costly.
- Diagnostic and clinical users could benefit from a
complete patient imaging system such as Enterprise
- Economic, operational and clinical forces are pushing
healthcare systems to switch from traditional imaging
systems to a unified Enterprise Imaging ecosystem.
- A converged Enterprise imaging approach offers several
benefits, including reduced complexity, lower cost,
increased efficiency, and enhanced care and satisfaction.
Imaging and Imaging IT are fundamental components of modern
healthcare. Their increasing application and use for clinical
diagnosis and treatment decisions have resulted in the use
of a variety of systems and technologies across departments,
specialties and healthcare facilities. That is why many
hospitals today have to deal with an assortment of disparate,
standalone systems that have different capabilities and
functions and are often inefficient, fragmented and costly.
Diagnostic and clinical users could benefit from a complete
patient imaging record. However, in such a fragmented
environment, this could be quite a challenge. But this challenge
must be overcome if healthcare organisations want to trade
in the imaging status quo of the individual, isolated silo for a
consolidated approach. One such solution is Enterprise Imaging.
Why Do Imaging Systems Need to Change?
Three primary forces are pushing healthcare providers to switch
from traditional imaging systems to a unified Enterprise Imaging
ecosystem. These include:
Buying, implementing, deploying, integrating and supporting
multiple imaging systems across multiple departments
is an inefficient and costly solution. The time and money
spent on managing and updating these siloed systems
and on duplicate storage could easily be put to better
use by investing in more efficient and value-driven solutions.
When healthcare organisations use siloed systems, each
system requires separate staff trained in its maintenance and
interface. Again, the time and money spent on training staff
on multiple user interfaces can be more efficiently utilised to develop skills that enhance patient care. Also, synchronising different systems with varied capabilities can be very
difficult, and auditing can also be quite complex.
Physicians and clinicians are ultimately the ones who need
patient imaging records. Switching from system to system to
find, compare and diagnose images and then make treatment
decisions based on those images can be time-consuming,
cumbersome and extremely inefficient. The goal of an imaging
record system should be to provide easier access to all images
so that clinicians can focus on adding value rather than spending
their time browsing through different systems.
Advantages of Converged Image Management
Image management systems have one basic purpose: to
acquire, store and display images. A consolidated system such
as Enterprise Imaging converges image collection, storage,
management and sharing. This is delivered through a scalable and centralised platform, reducing the technical complexity, IT
footprint and cost of the imaging ecosystem while increasing
efficiency. At the end of the day, the ultimate goal is to enhance
physician satisfaction and patient care.
Here are a few advantages of a converged Enterprise Imaging
Reduced complexity and total cost of ownership
Enterprise Imaging allows the use of lower-cost storage
alternatives such as tiered or cloud models. It also optimises
storage utilisation and eliminates duplicate storage. In addition, a
centralised system is less costly and takes less time to manage
and run. Security and data privacy is also much easier on a
centralised platform, and data recovery is simpler and faster.
Finally, Enterprise Imaging supports non-orders based workflows.
Therefore, integrating these into the billing system and workflow
improves the payment and reimbursement process.
Increased operational efficiency
Using a standardised approach for image capture, storage and
quality across an enterprise increases the long-term value of
these images and reduces the risk of duplicate exams. Also,
Enterprise Imaging supports the latest industry standards, thus
simplifying the integration of current and future applications. This
not only makes the system more efficient, but it also reduces
staff and training costs while optimising resources.
Enhanced clinical care and satisfaction
The Enterprise Imaging platform harmonises workflows and
helps build a patient-centric approach to care delivery. It
facilitates information sharing, multi-disciplinary cooperation
and patient engagement and improves the overall experience of both staff and patients. Longitudinal patient imaging records
also eliminate redundancies and enrich the strength and impact
of multi-disciplinary teams. Enterprise Imaging also offers an
intuitive and powerful viewer for image-enabling the EHR.
Building a Tailored and Robust Strategy with
While each hospital has its unique needs, Enterprise Imaging
allows healthcare organisations to build a robust imaging
Step 1: Converging radiology imaging ecosystem through PACs,
advanced image processing, reporting, clinical applications,
collaboration tools, analytics and more.
Step 2: Converging cardiology imaging into a single system
through the use of third-party solutions, thus optimising the
use of services such as Cath lab, CT, MRI, ultrasound, nuclear
medicine and ECG.
Step 3: Offering a consolidated platform with an enterprise-level VNA combined with a universal viewer providing care providers
access to multimedia patient information they need, anywhere,
anytime – including at the point of care.
Step 4: Driving imaging workflows of other departments and
service lines, making them standardised and stored centrally
in the VNA.
Step 5: Allowing cross-enterprise imaging sharing within a
hospital network and routing and sharing workflow support to
better manage data.
Overall, Enterprise Imaging offers a new strategic pathway to
hospitals. It can be applied based on the hospital’s immediate
economic, technical, operational and clinical priorities and their
objectives and current situation. Whether it’s overstressed
IT resources, low clinical productivity, missed financial
reimbursements, declining referrer loyalty or staff or patient
dissatisfaction, Enterprise Imaging offers the path to achieve
organisational goals smoothly and efficiently.