Ergonomic features can help alleviate sonographers’ pain
Sonographers who have worked in the ultrasound profession for an extended period of time often have pain in their joints or muscles. Unfortunately, musculoskeletal disorders plague the profession. In addition to causing pain and injury to sonographers, the disorders can have a serious negative financial impact on the business.
A well-designed ergonomic workstation can alleviate the pain on both fronts. Adjustable features can accommodate the majority of users and different work styles reducing the amount of static or awkward postures; improve access to the control panel without excessive reach; and provide controls that do not require excessive force. Before you invest in your next ultrasound system, read this white paper authored by Carolyn T. Coffin, MPH, RDMS, RVT, RDCS, Sound Ergonomics, LLC. Coffin specializes in the injury risks and ergonomics of health professions with a particular focus on diagnostic ultrasound.
This week’s articles include: tips for providers who are changing healthcare information systems; University at Buffalo and UBMD Orthopaedics win a $2 million NIH grant to study concussion damage; the FTC increases protection for consumer health data; an international team builds a new type of low-dose xray detector; and two-factor authentication can help protect the security of your accounts.
Tips for radiology practices on changing information systems – Diagnostic Imaging
Get a prenuptial agreement before partnering with your PACS vendor. That’s the recommendation of Steven C. Horii, MD, director of medical informatics in the department of radiology at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania. Horii says the agreement should include guaranteed access to your old database and – in the event the vendor goes out of business – access to their database schema. Also, when considering a HIS or RIS replacement, find out how prospective vendors will handle the conversion and desired workflow capabilities.
University of Buffalo awarded $2 million grant to study concussions – Health Imaging
Researchers at the Jacobs School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences at the University of Buffalo received a five-year, $2 million grant from the National Institutes of Health to study the impact concussions have on an individual’s body and brain. Physicians from UBMD Orthopaedics & Sports Medicine will conduct the study and are looking for teenage participants.
Tres estrategias para minimizar la interrupción de servicio después de una fusión
Como consultor de las TI en el Cuidado de la Salud, tengo la oportunidad de reunirme con altos ejecutivos en hospitales a lo largo del país. Debido a la tendencia de adquisiciones por la fuerte afiliación al cuidado de la salud hoy en día, no me sorprende que este sea un tema principal para altos ejecutivos y líderes de los departamentos que se verán afectados. Una preocupación particular es asegurarse de que los servicios de imagenologia no se vean interrumpidos durante o después de la adquisición. Esto requiere que la protección y accesibilidad a través de ajustes de cuidados. Para poder hacer frente a este desafío se requiere una estrategia de imagenologia robusta a lo largo de la empresa posterior a la fusión. Recientemente, El Instituto para la Transformación de Tecnología para la Salud (iHT2) llevo a cabo un proyecto de investigación, del cual fui participe. De esta investigación resultaron un detallado libro blanco y un seminario que exploró tres estrategias clave de integración:
- Estrategia Centrada en el Departamento de PACS
- Estrategia Centrada en la Empresa de Almacenaje
- Estrategia a lo Largo de la Empresa
Three strategies to minimize service disruptions post merger
As a healthcare IT consultant, I meet with senior executives at hospitals across the country. With the trend of acquisition and strong affiliation in healthcare today, it’s no surprise that this topic is top of mind for senior executives and leaders within the departments that will be affected. Of particular concern during and after an acquisition is making sure that imaging services are not disrupted. This requires making images secure and accessible across care settings. Addressing this challenge requires a robust post-merger enterprise-wide imaging strategy. Recently, the Institute for Health Technology Transformation (iHT2) undertook a research project, in which I was a participant. The research resulted in a detailed white paper and a webinar that explored three key integration strategies:
- Departmental PACS-Centric Strategy
- Enterprise Storage-Centric Strategy
- Cross-Enterprise Strategy
Tre strategie per ridurre al minimo gli impatti sull’Imaging dopo una fusione
In quanto consulente per l’IT sanitaria, incontro gli executive senior degli ospedali statunitensi. Considerando il trend odierno di acquisizioni e di forti associazioni nella sanità, non sorprende che, per gli executive senior e per i responsabili dei dipartimenti che ne saranno coinvolti, il tema sia in primo piano. Durante e dopo un’acquisizione, si pone grande attenzione al mantenimento della regolare operatività dei servizi di imaging. Questo richiede che le immagini siano poste in sicurezza e accessibili nelle varie strutture sanitarie. Per affrontare il problema è necessaria una solida strategia post-merger di imaging con portata enterprise, ossia multipresidio e multidipartimentale. Recentemente, l’Institute for Health Technology Transformation (iHT2) ha intrapreso un progetto di ricerca, al quale ho partecipato. Ne sono scaturiti un white paper dettagliato e un webinar che hanno studiato tre strategie principali d’integrazione:
- Strategia incentrata sui PACS Dipartimentali
- Strategia incentrata sullo Storage Enterprise
- Strategia Cross-Enterprise
Strategia incentrata sui PACS Dipartimentali
Alcune organizzazioni sostituiscono tutti i disparati Picture Archiving and Communications Systems (PACS), degli ospedali e delle cliniche acquisite, con un singolo PACS enterprise centralizzato, condiviso da diverse strutture. A breve termine questa strategia “stacca e sostituisci” può essere costosa, ma chi la propone afferma che fornisce il migliore livello di produttività tra le strutture e che a lungo termine fa risparmiare denaro. Tuttavia, chi dissente afferma che è fonte di sensibili interferenze e che spesso obbliga le strutture a condividere impostazioni di sistema e workflow similari, che possono variare in base al tipo di servizi offerti. Ad esempio, un ospedale di un’area rurale con radiologi generali offrirà servizi differenti rispetto a un ospedale universitario con parecchi radiologi delle varie sottospecialità.
This week’s articles include: virtual reality for radiology, balancing volume and value in radiology, new research on IT tools to help with pain management, Apple’s plans for a wearable medical device and a poll revealing patients’ views and experiences with healthcare delivery.
Is radiology ready for virtual reality? – Health Imaging
Modern healthcare is about to enter a new era in which doctors can not only view 3D models using images from MRI, ultrasound and other modalities, but they can actually reach out and “touch” those images, tour patients’ anatomical structures and perform mock operations using virtual reality technology. The article recently published in the Wall Street Journal also highlights the rapid advancement of virtual reality capabilities and the growing technology’s potential impact on healthcare. @HealthImaging
Q&A: Why does radiology need to be taking risks now? – Health Imaging
Over the last 10 years, leaders in healthcare have talked about transitioning from volume to value. And while that is critically important, ultimately we still need volume. Like any business, we have to stay focused on understanding how we are going to continue to grow. So it’s really not transitioning from volume to value. It’s transitioning from fee-based to value-based and then going out to get more volume, to grow your market share.
Innovative X-ray-based imaging technologies for rapid and accurate diagnosis of thoracic disease in critically ill patients
My most recent research at Toronto General Hospital explored the value of dual-energy (DE) imaging and digital tomosynthesis (DT) as solutions to the limitations of conventional radiographic thoracic imaging (chest radiography). Both DE and DT have been around for a few decades, but recent advancements in digital detectors have made this technology increasingly promising in clinical use.
To this end, I conducted a study in collaboration with Ali Ursani, BEng, Fatima Ursani and Narinder Paul, MD, from Toronto General Hospital. Dr. Paul, who is the Site Chief, Toronto General Hospital – Joint Department of Medical Imaging, was the principal investigator in the study. In addition, four imaging experts from Carestream Health – Samuel Richard, PhD, Xiaohui Wang, PhD, Nathan Packard, PhD, and Levon Vogelsang PhD – were key participants. Additional support for patient recruitment consisted of the research coordinator and the team of technologists trained on the system with DE and DT functionalities.
Among the study’s many objectives were these:
- Understand the gap between the performance of state-of-the-art chest radiograph (CXR) and computed tomography and the current needs of imaging facilities and patients.
- Explore the concepts of dual-energy imaging and digital tomosynthesis as viable solutions to address these needs.
- Examine the potential benefits that might be offered by a combined DE and DT system.
Carestream Touch Prime and XE Systems offer sealed control panel for easy cleaning
Healthcare-associated infections (HAIs) are once again grabbing headlines. In December Kaiser Health News reported, “Medicare Penalizes 758 Hospitals For Safety Incidents.” The following month, The Osgood File on CBS Radio News aired a segment on “Preventing Infections in Hospitals” urging patients to be more proactive and advocate for themselves during hospital stays. And the CDC Vital Signs March report called on healthcare providers to focus efforts to prevent HAIs in three areas: prevent spread of bacteria between patients; improve antibiotic use; and prevent infections related to surgery or placement of a catheter.
However, it’s not media attention that makes the reduction of HAIs a priority for hospital administrators and staff – it’s the threat to patients and the hospital’s financial health.
This week’s articles include: expanded reimbursements for telehealth; the buzz from HIMSS – interoperability, connected health and consumerization; ECR spotlight – top five trends affecting medical imaging; report predicts global diagnostic imaging market will top $33.4 billion by 2020; and HIMSS survey reveals health systems are using at least three different types of mHealth technology.
Telehealth bill brings reimbursement debate to center stage – Health Data Management
The forces may be aligning to expand reimbursement for telehealth—or at a minimum, to increase a national discussion on the issue. A new act in Congress would expand Medicare telehealth services, and improve care outcomes and help cut costs for patients and providers. The bill has 67 professional organizations lining up in favor of it, including AARP, American Health Insurance Plans, the American Heart Association and Kaiser Permanente.
Connecting the dots on connected health at HIMSS 2016 – Clinical Innovation + Technology
Another HIMSS Conference & Exhibition has come and gone, and true to expectations, interoperability, connected health and consumerization were the most prevalent buzz words this year. Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Sylvia M. Burwell announced that a group of major healthcare players—including companies that collectively provide 90 percent of EHRs used by hospitals nationwide, as well as the top five largest private healthcare systems in the country—have agreed to implement three core commitments: consumer access, no information blocking and standards. Continue reading
These Letters Have a Lot to Say about the Past, Present and Future of Healthcare IT
Per leggere la storia in italiano, clicca qui
Last week, Part I of this series looked at the motivations, challenges and standards involved in developing EMR / EHRs to support more efficient and effective patient-centered care. We also looked into the history of the PACS concept for acquiring, archiving, managing and accessing radiology images.
In Part II, we look at the evolution of PACS technology to serve diagnostic departments beyond radiology. And we introduce another acronym, the VNA (Vendor Neutral Archive), which points the way to a fully interconnected platform for sharing clinical images from every department across the enterprise. Thereby supporting the imaging requirements of the acronyms we began with in Part I: the EMR / EHR.