HIMSS 2013: Securing Mobile Devices and Applications in the Age of Patient Access

Cristine Kao

Cristine Kao, Global Marketing Manager, Healthcare IT, Carestream

Healthcare trends are perpetually moving in the direction of handing over more control to the patients. Much of this control lives in the form of online resources and patient portals that provide the ability to send non-urgent communications with health providers, request or cancel appointments, and view medical history.

As patient portal adoption increases, health providers are expanding access beyond desktops and software-as-a-service (SaaS) models, and relying more on mobile devices as access points. According to Pew Research, half of smartphone owners use their devices to get health information and one-fifth of smartphone users have a health-related application on their device—numbers that have increased steadily over the past two years. There are important concerns that must be addressed as mobile health usage and adoption increases. Personal health record applications make up one of the smaller segments of health apps being used and this is because it carries one of the biggest concerns with it– securing patient information.

In 2012, the Government Accountability Office released a list of the most common mobile vulnerabilities and how to combat them. Below are the four I selected as being of the most important to healthcare providers who rely on mobile devices and apps to provide patients with access to their health information. The list includes the three areas of mobile patient access that must be addressed by the healthcare providers, vendors, and even the patients—the mobile device, the network, and the back-end data storage:

Unoriginal passwords and no two-factor authentication: Unfortunately, passwords such as “password” and “123456”remain as some of the most common passwords used. To combat this, health providers and companies relying on password-protected access must educate patients on the importance of writing unique passwords. The inclusion of two-factor authentication provides an additional security layer after the password. By providing information such, “What city your father was born in?” or “What was the name of your high school?” it creates another layer between the sensitive data and the hacker.

Wireless transmissions are not always encrypted: Data encryption across wireless networks is a necessity, especially when it concerns patient data. HIPAA regulations requires stored patient data to be encrypted since network eavesdropping is a common security breach tactic among hackers.

Software on mobile devices may not be up to date: Users are at an increased security risk if they are not updating their software on a routine basis when their providers alert them to. Many of these operating system updates include enhanced security, and if users are using an older system then that means that they aren’t receiving the highest level of security protection possible.

Securing data center hardware: With Carestream’s MyVue* and Vue Motion being made available for iPad access, we, like others in the mobile healthcare application space, must host the programming and data in secure data centers. When deployed from Carestream own private cloud environments to host the data, Carestream controls the security, management, and maintenance, while optimizing the access performance.

There are two key areas of education that healthcare providers must provide to patients when encouraging them to access their data via mobile devices. The first is that the provider must be able to educate why the portal/ application is important to the patients. Secondly, the healthcare provider must also provide information containing the “Do’s” and “Don’ts” of accessing medical information online or via a mobile device. This is sensitive, personal information, and it is vital that vendors work with the healthcare providers and patients to ensure that data remains safe, secure, and reliable.

*Available March 2013

Join us in booth #2727 at HIMSS13 for to discuss health IT strategies and solutions that facilitate secure image exchange, mobile access and patient engagement. Click here to read about the products from the Carestream Vue portfolio that will be demoed at the trade show and provide a look into the integration of imaging and information management.  

ECR 2013: Challenges Facing Radiologists and Solution Providers in Europe

Ludovic d’Apréa, Carestream Manager, France-Belgium-Luxembourg Region

Ludovic d’Apréa, Carestream Manager, France-Belgium-Luxembourg Region

With the European Congress of Radiology (ECR) in Vienna, Austria, approaching fast in March 2013, it’s appropriate to take a look at the issues and challenges the industry faces, as well as what attendees can expect from Carestream at the show.

Pressing challenges facing radiologists and radiology solution providers in Europe today.

The situation is very difficult at the moment for many of our customers. The UK has recently decided to decrease healthcare expenditure by £20 billion within 5 years. The Italian government has implemented a law that forces hospitals to save EUR 8.5 billion over the next few years. With very few exceptions, unemployment in the Euro 15 zone is high. Many countries are running huge deficits. We’ll see all these healthcare-related austerity programmes gain momentum in 2013.

Parallel to that, a longer-lasting trend, the demographic change, is becoming more serious, which means, for radiology, that the demand for high quality imaging is in fact increasing. But healthcare providers cannot simply invest in imaging in order to meet demand. In countries like the UK, France, Italy and Spain, there are strong regulations in place now that make investments difficult. We have national purchase organisations in many European countries that negotiate prices. All this makes it far from easy for healthcare IT providers in general, be it in imaging or in other fields.

Ways in which Carestream can respond to these challenges.

One of our biggest strengths is our ability to understand the radiology market. The needs of customers and their financial situations are very diverse in Europe. For a company like Carestream, this means that we have to understand diversity and be able to provide solutions that are adaptable to individual needs. On a macro level, we will certainly see a bigger demand for financing through the vendor and for cloud-based services. But on a micro level, we will have to be able to tailor our solutions to all radiologists in all countries, whether they have mature markets or not.

Carestream solutions being presented at the ECR 2013.

A showstopper in the segment of digital capture will be our new DRX 2530C detector*, which will be demonstrated as a work-in-progress. The new caesium iodide detector is being designed to offer high efficiency for dose-sensitive paediatric, orthopaedic and general radiology exams. All part of the DRX-1 system that allows for the easy conversion of existing analogue rooms to digital radiology.

The DRX 2530C will be a wireless, cassette-sized detector that allows fast and easy positioning in paediatric incubator trays and offers higher DQE (detective quantum efficiency), which can lead to lower dose requirements than CR cassettes or gadolinium scintillator detectors. It is also ideal for orthopaedic tabletop imaging, because handling is easy and positioning is highly flexible, aiding exams such as knee, elbow, skull and other exams that require a patient to hold the detector or that require a smaller field of view. Through the whole DRX-1 system we utilise existing equipment and give the customer a chance to go digital without forcing any investment in really big solutions.

Overall, the market will evolve towards cloud-based solutions, especially in the field of picture archiving. With the Vue portfolio, we are well positioned to meet these needs. In Europe, we are certainly one of the leaders in this technology. But again, we don’t force any customer into cloud-based services. It is an option.

At ECR 2013, we will focus on our new MyVue portal that allows Vue customers to securely share images with patients. Through the portal, patients are given the opportunity to download to PCs, laptops, or iPads and share their images with whomever they like. There is no longer any need to burn to a CD. This makes it easier for the patient, and at the same time it means less work for the radiologist.

MyVue is currently available as an option for Vue PACS and Vue Archive users and is now available for order as a Vue Cloud Service. The Vue Cloud Service offers the flexibility of a monthly fee and can accommodate rapid expansion without the need for healthcare facilities to fund and manage network expansions to accommodate additional patient users.

What are you most looking forward to seeing at the ECR 2013? Are there specific products or services that are on your radar this year?

Based on an article originally produced for HealthTechWire.

*Not commercially available

 

Visit us at booth #211 at ECR 2013 to see the medical imaging and healthcare information technology systems that are at work in 90 percent of hospitals worldwide. We’ll be holding demonstrations of our DRX-Revolution, Mobile X-ray System, Vue Cloud Services and MyVue patient engagement portal.

ECR2013

Dose Efficiency for Pediatric Patients via an Improved Image Formation Process

Lynn La Pietra, Senior Research Scientist, Carestream

Lynn La Pietra, Ph.D., Senior Research Scientist, Carestream

John Yorkston, Ph.D., Senior Research Scientist, Carestream

John Yorkston, Ph.D., Senior Research Scientist, Carestream

Radiography trends related to pediatric patients was a focal point at RSNA 2012 and it continues to pick up more steam as we move into 2013. From dose reduction to relying on digital radiography for improved diagnostics, radiologists have an encyclopedia of issues to address when it comes to their youngest patients.

The Society of Pediatric Radiology’s Image Gently campaign launched a “Back to Basics” initiative in September 2012, which encourages the use of imaging practices that are specific to pediatric patients. The following paragraphs outlines principles in general X-Ray procedures that should be followed throughout the three stages of the imaging process (Image acquisition, image processing for display, and image review and assessment) in an effort to provide safe imaging practices to pediatric patients.

Image acquisition: Adaptable acquisition protocols are essential in image acquisition when it comes to the various pediatric body sizes. The range of body habitus requires acquisition techniques to be tailored to each patient’s size and age. Based on recent FDA recommendations, it is important to offer the ability to select the pediatric patient body sizes from a range of categories. These recommendations around categories remain in-line with the new FDA material released in 2012 about the topic. The categories allow the system to choose default acquisition parameters and processing configurations that are appropriate for the different types of patients and detectors.

Once an image has been acquired via a DR system, the rapid display of the preview image allows the radiographer to quickly decide whether the patient’s anatomy was accurately captured or if another image needs to be taken. To help analyze these images faster, the new IEC Exposure Index (EI) standard should be implemented for a quick assessment of the amount of radiation used to create the image. The associated Deviation Index (DI) allows an immediate evaluation compared to the institutional target of exposure for the given exam. This type of immediate feedback helps the radiographer provide more consistent image quality from the detector to the next step of the image chain.

Image Processing for Display: Appropriate image processing must be performed to present the diagnostic information clearly and efficiently to the radiologist. Software is needed that can be tailored to adjust the image-processing parameters to a specific site’s preference. By possessing information about the patient’s size and age, the parameters can be adjusted to display the features of the clinical information in a more informative way compared to using the configurations for adults.

Image Review and Assessment: It’s important to have an ongoing quality control program in place that ensures a continuous high quality of the images delivered to radiologists. System capabilities should enable sites to easily track many of the important detector parameters that define acceptable images.. If departments require image capture and delivery across multiple facilities, then reporting and analysis software must allow the quality control personnel to query all of the systems across the network from a central location. This proactive initiative can quickly highlight irregular exposure levels, high repeat rates, or other image issues that can develop.

It’s clear that pediatric imaging presents issues that must be addressed separately from the other imaging trends faced when working with adults. To complement this trend in 2013, Carestream is working on the DRX 2530C Detector*–which is currently in development—and is intended to be a smaller-format, cesium iodide detector designed for dose-sensitive applications such as pediatrics. The detector is intended to have easy handling for fast, flexible positioning in pediatric incubator trays.

For more information on this topic, please check out our white paper, “Maximizing Dose Efficiency for Pediatric Patient Imaging.”

*Not commercially available

The Year of the Snake: Radiologists Get Ready!

Cristen Bolan, Executive Editor, Applied Radiology

Cristen Bolan, Executive Editor, Applied Radiology

Guest post by Cristen Bolan, executive editor, Applied Radiology.

For those of you who follow the Chinese calendar, you know that 2013 is the year of the snake, which according to ancient Chinese wisdom, a snake in the house is a good omen because the snake is cunning, therefore good at business and your family will not starve. That’s a relief.

With so many changes taking place in health care, like the “doc fix” in the American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012, what good omens will Radiologists need to see in the coming year to be successful? If you hear the sound of “accountable care organizations” or “ACOs” reverberating in your ears, you’re catching on.

Yes, ACO has an ominous ring to it. Maybe because it’s an acronym, but everything in the medical field ends up as an acronym. This is to simplify the meaning, and ACOs are simply intended to be incentives for health care providers to work together to treat an individual patient across care settings — including doctor’s offices, hospitals and long-term care facilities.

Now, is that so scary? Well, the American College of Radiology (ACR) thought it wise for radiologists to brace themselves, and wrote a white paper on strategies for successful radiologist participation in ACOs, appropriately called Strategies for Radiologists in the Era of Health Care Reform and Accountable Care Organizations.1

In the paper, the ACR presented its best assessment of what’s in store for radiologists with regard to ACO development and how radiologists can prepare themselves and their practices for associated potential changes to the current payment system.1

Here are a few tips:

  1. Radiologists should seek leadership positions within local ACOs.
  2. Radiologists should strive to align themselves with any integrated health care provider organization that either becomes or joins an ACO.
  3. Radiologists must focus more on providing the best possible care to patients and still maintain cost-effective patient throughput.
  4. Radiologists should be paid on the basis of fee-for-service (FFS) or derivative payments, in which radiologists are incentivized for and responsible for utilization management.
  5. Furthermore, radiologists should take the lead role in utilization management. “Working closely with referring physicians, radiologists can best ensure that the imaging studies performed are those that are most appropriate, thereby reducing the need for follow-up studies.”1

The ACR warns that if radiologists are unwilling to assume leadership roles in the ACO, imaging could become a marginalized commodity within the ACO. The message is clear — when ACOs roll in, you better step it up!

But like other ominous predictions that fell short of disaster—the Y2K scare that had little to no effect on IT infrastructures, and the world did not come to an end on December 21, 2012—there’s a good chance radiology will ride out this storm too — and diagnostic imaging will not become a commodity.

But nothing has been decided yet — the Chinese New Year’s Day doesn’t fall until February 10, 2013.

Reference:

1. Allen B Jr, Levin DC, Brant-Zawadzki M, et al. ACR White Paper: Strategies for Radiologists in the Era of Health Care Reform and Accountable Care Organizations: A Report From the ACR Future Trends Committee. J Am Coll Radiol. 2011;8:309-317.

For the Win-Win: Improved Image Quality and Accelerated Workflow with Digital Radiography (DR)

Helen Titus

Helen Titus, Marketing Director, Digital Capture Solutions, Carestream

It’s pretty safe to say that we are all going to be happier and better off when we find solutions that work for all parties involved. Even in healthcare, the focus needs to be on win-win situations.

At RSNA this year, a group presented the findings of a study conducted at Massachusetts General Hospital. After collecting 80 chest images of ICU patients, researchers concluded that DR images can be of similar or better quality while improving turnaround time and workflow.

According to Dr. Vogl and Dr. Lehnert of Klinikum of the Johann Wolfgang Goethe Universität, the DRX-Revolution Mobile X-ray System accomplishes just that, improving both facility performance and patient experience. Their facility is based in the center of Frankfurt and performs between 200,000 and 250,000 exams each year. After adding a DRX-Revolution, they have seen vast improvements in both image quality and workflow in their bedside imaging exams.

Based on the study, our conversation with Dr. Vogl and Dr. Lehnert, and other customer proven results, it’s becoming clear that the adoption of DR in health facilities means two very important things. First, processes involving patients are being completed in a shorter amount of time. Second, their images are going to be of a higher quality while less radiation dose is administered.

The result – improved healthcare.

Watch our interview with Dr. Vogl and Dr. Lehnert of Klinikum  from RSNA 2012:

[youtube=http://youtu.be/NdHihsYhc_A]

The Coldest Journey: Q&A with Dr. Rob Lambert, Expedition Team Doctor

Jane Grimsley, Marketing Manager for Digital Capture Europe, Carestream

Jane Grimsley, Marketing Manager for Digital Capture Europe, Carestream

We managed to catch up with Dr. Rob Lambert, expedition team doctor, before he left the UK to fly to Cape Town and join the rest of the Coldest Journey team. We were able to get a little more background on the journey he faces and why the DRX Transportable is going with them.

Rob, tell us a bit about yourself and how you came to be involved in The Coldest Journey.

I trained as a doctor in the UK, focusing on A&E (accident and emergency) and then spent the last year in Antarctica with the British Antarctica Survey. When I heard about the plans last year for The Coldest Journey expedition I applied to join, and here we are now. I’ll be involved in the project until February 2014, or thereabouts, and then I’ll be heading back to the NHS to look for a job!

I’m the only trained medic on the team, but everyone is first aid trained and comes with masses of experience in this field. I’ll also have various medical consultants on call should the need arise. In conditions such as those we’re facing, it’s the minor things that can turn into major traumas. Blisters for example, in normal circumstances, wouldn’t be too much to worry about but can be debilitating on a journey such as this.

You were responsible for selecting the DRX Transportable.  We spoke recently to Wendy Tiller in the UK and understand that Sir Ranulph Fiennes himself made the call to find out more (she thought it was a prank call!) Tell us how you found the system and how you plan on using it.

We’re a six-person team traveling completely self-sufficiently, so we need to have all of the medical equipment we are possibly going to require along with us. We needed a digital X-ray system to take with us on the expedition and I looked closely at all of the systems available before settling on Carestream. Ran (Sir Ranulph) gets involved with all of the sponsors so once I had flagged up to him that the DRX Transportable could do everything we needed, he put in the call. Since then I’ve worked very closely with the UK sales team, who have put together a package that fulfills all of our needs.

Dr. Rob Lambert, team expedition doctor for The Coldest Journey.

Dr. Rob Lambert, team expedition doctor for The Coldest Journey.

The best-case scenario is that we never have to use the DRX. It’s a back-up piece of equipment for a worst-case scenario, and if it sits in its case for a year, I’ll be happy.

Huskies have been banned from Antarctica since the Madrid Protocol of 1991 – to prevent the introduction of disease to indigenous species – so the team has to rely on mechanical pulling power in the shape of bulldozers that will pull the cabooses, and the porta-cabin style living quarters that house all of the food, fuel, equipment and living quarters for the team.

The equipment will be tested before we reach Antarctica, will be placed in one of these cabooses, and will be kept in decent conditions. From a medical perspective the conditions are tricky, space is cramped and working in the medical equivalent of a shoe-box is going to be challenging to say the least.

Sir Ranulph Fiennes, accompanied by another member, will lead the team at all times, skiing out front using ground-penetrating radar to avoid crevasses. The team of six will always be within a relatively short distance of the land-train. This means that any medical procedures can be carried out immediately, more or less.

What are your expectations of the challenges ahead?

It’s so difficult to project ahead. Especially if we’re successful, we’ll be the very first team to have achieved this crossing, so there’s no benchmark.

Dealing with the weather and the extreme cold are the obvious challenges and I’m sure that will present lots of issues. There’s always the potential for something really serious to happen, which is why we’re fully equipped medically, including the DRX Transportable, and we have a really experienced team.

But the biggest unknown lies in the emotional challenge, the team dynamic and how six people living in confined quarters will get on. That, ultimately, is what will determine the success or failure of this trip.

Right now it will be a relief to get on with business, all of the planning, and the months and months of work have all been working to get us to this point. Now it’s time to start the engines and start putting one foot in front of the other.

The Twitter accounts for The Coldest Journey and Carestream will be posting updates throughout the team’s journey. You can follow the organizations at @coldestjourney and @Carestream. You can also follow The Coldest Journey’s updates on Facebook. We wish Sir Ranulph, Dr. Lambert, and the team a safe and successful journey across Antarctica.

Quiz: Who got pushed off the fiscal cliff?

Cristen Bolan, Executive Editor, Applied Radiology

Cristen Bolan, Executive Editor, Applied Radiology

Guest post by Cristen Bolan, executive editor, Applied Radiology.

There is no such thing as a free lunch—in the end someone has to foot the bill. So, here’s my question:

Who got pushed off the fiscal cliff?

     A. The Hospitals

     B. The Doctors  

     C. The Patients

Well, lets look at the facts:

The American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012 passed on January 1, 2013. The law includes the “doc fix” designed to prevent steep cuts in Medicare reimbursements to doctors.1 While the “doc fix” aims to avert a 27% pay cut slated to hit doctors due to the sustainable growth rate, the $30 billion price tag is offset in the bill by cuts in reimbursement to other Medicare providers over the next 10 years,2 and hospitals will pickup nearly 50% of the tab.Sounds like paying Peter to save “fiscal cliff” Paul.

So, the answer is A. The hospitals.

Well, the plot thickens. When we say hospitals, it means the “doc fix” also hits up radiological services to foot the bill. It does this by increasing the technical component (TC) equipment utilization threshold for advanced imaging modalities from the current 75% to 90% beginning January 2014.2 This aims to save Medicare $800 million over the next 10 years.

The law also slashes Medicare payments for radiation oncology over 10 years, with a 19% cut to freestanding therapy centers and $300 million in reduced funding to treat cancer.

Don’t forget, the ACR put up a good fight. It tried to prevent the TC payment decreases and advocated for the inclusion of the H.R. 3269/S. 2347, the Diagnostic Imaging Services Access Protection Act, in the final legislative package. The H.R. 3269/S. 2347 was created to prevent Medicare from implementing a 25% reduction to the professional component of certain diagnostic imaging services for multiple imaging studies administered to the same patient, by physicians in the same practice setting, on the same day.

But in the end, someone had to pay.

Here is the break down:

Hospitals Cuts4

• IPPS Documentation and Coding Adjustments for Implementation of MS-DRGs:  This provision phases in the recoupment of past overpayments to hospitals made as a result of the transition to Medicare Severity Diagnosis Related Groups (MS-DRGs). Savings: $10.5 billion

• Certain Radiology Services Payments: This provision equalizes reimbursement for stereotactic radiosurgery services provided on under Medicare hospital outpatient payment system. Savings: $40 million

• Adjustment of Equipment Utilization Rate for Advanced Imaging Services:  This provision would increase the utilization factor used in the setting of payment for imaging services in Medicare from 75 percent to 90 percent. Savings: $80 million

So, it is the docs? 

Here’s one more hint: The “doc fix” will impact severe trauma patients or those with cancer and other illnesses, which require multiple imaging procedures.“Reverting to continuous provider cuts to help pay for a morbidly flawed payment policy… is a disservice to our nation’s seniors,” Paul Ellenbogen, MD, FACR, the ACR Board of Chancellors Chair noted.4

So what is the answer?

Answer:

D. All of the above

References:

1._Medicare. The New York Times. http://topics.nytimes.com/top/news/health/diseasesconditionsandhealthtopics/medicare/index.html?inline=nyt-classifier. Posted January 2, 2013. Accessed January 8, 2013.

2._Solana K. A Look at Medicare Costs and Cuts in the Fiscal Cliff Deal. The Medicare Newsgroup. http://medicarenewsgroup.com/context/understanding-medicare-blog/understanding-medicare-blog/2013/01/02/a-look-at-medicare-costs-and-cuts-in-the-fiscal-cliff-deal. Posted January 2, 2013. Accessed January 8, 2013.

3._ACR Update on Diagnostic Imaging Services Access Protection Act Bills in Congress. Society for Vascular Ultrasound. http://www.svunet.org/i4a/pages/index.cfm?pageID=3958Posted July 2012. Accessed January 8, 2013.

4._ACR Statement on Imaging Cuts in Fiscal Cliff Legislation. http://www.acr.org/News-Publications/News/News-Articles/2013/ACR/20130102-Statement-on-Imaging-Cuts-in-Fiscal-Cliff-LegislationJanuary 2, 2013. Accessed January 8, 2013.

Siddhant Diagnostic Center in India Improves Patient Satisfaction with Digital Radiography

Dr. Nirmal Jain, Chief Radiologist, Siddhant Diagnostic Center

Dr. Nirmal Jain, Chief Radiologist, Siddhant Diagnostic Center

The Indian healthcare industry is growing at a rapid pace to support a growing elderly population, rising incomes and changing disease profiles, posing many challenges for care providers. About a year ago, my facility in Varanasi, Uttar Pradesh, faced crowded lobbies and high patient dissatisfaction driven by our five minute turnaround time for a single X-ray.

To streamline workflow and improve patient satisfaction, in May 2011 Siddhant Diagnostic Center became the first healthcare institute in India to install the CARESTREAM DRX-Ascend System, an advanced digital radiography system designed for small to mid-size imaging centers like ours.

After two days of training, our technologists were up and running on the new system and more than a year later the overall impact of the newly installed CARESTREAM DRX-Ascend System on our patient’s satisfaction has became evident to me in more ways than one:

Siddhant Diagnostic Center in Varanasi Uttar Pradesh, India

Siddhant Diagnostic Center in Varanasi Uttar Pradesh, India

1. Flexible positioning for more patient comfort:  The woes of patients and technicians due to limited machine flexibility in complex x-ray exams are over. The Carestream DRX detector allows free-position studies like cross-table lateral hips, knee-joint axial, cubital joint lateral, etc. The DRX detector can be easily moved from the wall stand to the table for supine exams. The wide float-top table has has allowed technicians in our Center to place large patients on the table and position them comfortably.  Our technicians can also lower and elevate this table to accommodate wheelchair and emergency patients conveniently.

2. Immediate image preview:  Our patient exam time has been reduced with the availability of image preview within five seconds and a complete image within 20 seconds, giving our doctors the ability to offer immediate diagnosis.

3. Advanced display cuts down repeat exams: Technologists have the ability to view exams, change techniques and previous images on a touch-panel screen mounted on the tube stand. This allows our technicians to select x-ray procedure parameters standing near the patient. From there the technician can confirm whether the image has been properly acquired or if a repeat exam is needed. This saves time, cuts down on repeat exams and can lower patient exposure to radiation dose.

Thanks to the CARESTREAM DRX-Ascend System our imaging time has reduced from five to two to three minutes, leading to a decrease in patient wait time and improved patient satisfaction. It has also positioned the Center well to accommodate the growth in India’s healthcare system. The reduced imaging time has enabled us to conduct 50 percent more x-ray examinations than what we completed before the installation of the DR system, giving us much-needed productivity boost.

Guess the X-Ray – January’s Image Challenge

Happy New Year!

With the new year comes a new Image Challenge, but first congratulations to those who correctly identified the 10 items in last month’s challenge, which included the following:

Shampoo, conditioner, ear plugs, toothbrush, toothpaste, nail file, razor, soap, the bag, and floss.

Below is the image for the first challenge of 2013! The challenge will run until February 4. Please leave your answer in either the comment section below or on our Facebook page. Good luck!

january

Sorry…Carestream employees and their agencies are prohibited from entering.

DRX-Transportable System About to Make Its “Coldest Journey”

Jane Grimsley, Marketing Manager for Digital Capture Europe, Carestream

Jane Grimsley, Marketing Manager for Digital Capture Europe, Carestream

Veteran polar explorer, Sir Ranulph Fiennes, is about to embark on what is considered to be “The Coldest Journey”—a 4,000-kilometer expedition across Antarctica in the dead of winter. Having never been accomplished before, the frigid environment will see Sir Ranulph and his crew face complete darkness for most of the adventure in temperatures as low as -90°C.

Conditions such as these require the utmost care and medical attention. Sir Ranulph and his team will not be without expert medical staff and equipment. The expedition’s doctor, Rob Lambert, said that an X-ray system that is small, light and easy to operate would be a necessity for the adventure. The DRX-Transportable fills those needs and will be accompanying the team throughout their journey.

The DRX-Transportable is a rugged, all-in-one solution specifically designed for use in the field. Additionally, a Carestream distributor in the UK, BCF Technology, has donated the source generator for X-ray capture.

While “The Coldest Journey” is seeking to accomplish something that has never been done before, the organization is also doing this for a greater cause. In addition to crossing Antarctica, the team also has a goal of raising USD10 million for “Seeing is Believing,” a global charitable initiative to fight avoidable blindness.

The expedition officially set off on December 6th, when the expedition ship SA Agulhas set sail from London with over 100 tonnes of equipment needed for the crossing. The six Ice Team members will join the ice-strengthened vessel in Cape Town before heading down to Antarctica.

On March 21, 2013, the team will begin their six-month journey to reach the Ross Sea, which is a deep bay in the Southern Ocean of Antarctica. The expedition’s route will take them from the Russian base of Novolazareskaya (Novo) to Captain Scott’s base at McMurdo Sound, via the South Pole. Including the return trip, training, and preparations, Sir Ranulph and his team will be on the expedition for 15 months.

Map courtesy of http://thecoldestjourney.org and map created by LIMA Project

Map courtesy of http://thecoldestjourney.org and map created by LIMA Project

This mission will test the limits of human endurance. During this time the team will be entirely self-sufficient as there is no search and rescue facility available, as aircraft cannot penetrate inland during winter due to darkness and risk of fuel freezing.

We are proud that Sir Ranulph reached out to Carestream to use our DRX-Transportable for his expedition. We hope that they never have to use it throughout their travels, but we have the utmost confidence that it will provide the appropriate diagnosis in a time of need.

Be on the lookout for future updates from us.  The Twitter accounts for The Coldest Journey and Carestream will be posting updates throughout the team’s journey. You can follow the organizations at @coldestjourney and @Carestream. We wish Sir Ranulph, Dr. Lambert, and the team a safe and successful journey across Antarctica.