Radiologists are practicing in an environment of tremendous change. The changeover from film-based radiology to faster, sharper PACS and the increasing demand for more complex diagnostic procedures, continues to transform the ways in which radiologists work and how they collaborate with other medical healthcare specialists. That role includes interacting more closely with referring physicians and patients within a fast-paced digital environment, identifying solutions to new demands and challenges, and pinpointing and evaluating the newest technologies that provide patients with the widest range of options.
IT, in fact, shapes workflow in this modern climate. New imaging technologies like PACS have revolutionised the way a radiologist works and make it even more essential than ever before that they remain up-to-date with the latest in technology. Because managing radiology IT systems constitutes such a significant portion of the daily workload of department heads, and impacts on the efficient running of almost every area of the entire department, IT is a crucial area of the management of an imaging department.
The advantages brought about by PACS, such as the almost instant access to high-quality diagnostic images for retrieval, interpretation and return to referring doctors is counter-balanced by a hugely increased performance pressure on radiologists and other physicians and clinicians and for IT professionals facilitating the new electronic environment. The challenges brought about by increased collaboration with other radiologists, referring physicians and IT and other nonclinical staff is matched by the need for increased productivity and has in effect, made them more dependent on having the best possible IT and storage systems.
With this in mind, we have addressed PACS & IT in this edition’s cover story section, in order to provide
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