OSF Saint Francis Medical Center Moving from CR to DR Imaging

Patients get less radiation and center gains faster throughput with digital radiography

Light bulb shining

OSF Saint Francis Medical Center hit the trifecta by moving from CR to DR. We gained rapid access to high-quality diagnostic images, our patients are getting less radiation, and we’re moving patients through quicker.Like other facilities, we explored moving from CR to DR in part because of the U.S. Consolidated Appropriations Act. Its provisions include a 20% reduction for reimbursement associated with an X-ray taken using film starting this year.

In 2016, we installed four CARESTREAM DRX-Evolution systems, two CARESTREAM DRX-Revolution Mobile X-ray Systems and five CARESTREAM DRX-Mobile Retrofit Kits  at our primary medical center and two affiliated ambulatory care centers.

The DRX-Evolution system is at our two ambulatory sites: one in Washington, the other in Peoria. At our Washington facility, we have only one room and one technologist, but she is able to image about 22 patients a day. Our second ambulatory center in Peoria has two DRX-Evolution systems and they perform about 1,100 exams a month. The rapid access to high-quality diagnostic images increases our throughput at both centers, reduces patient wait times, and improves the satisfaction of our referring doctors because images and patients are back in their offices sooner.

Our technologists love the ergonomic features of the DRX-Evolution. The system’s auto-positioning feature and remote control eliminate the need for technologists to manually move the X-ray tube into position for each exam, reducing the possibility of repetitive stress injuries. Also, the DRX Plus detectors are lightweight and easy to get in and out of the Bucky.  Both centers have the wall stand mounted on a rail to facilitate capturing cross-table exams as well as bending exams used to detect and treat scoliosis and other conditions.

Retrofit kits and Revolution systems make upgrade easy

We’re using the DRX-Revolution systems and DRX-Mobile Retrofit Kits in our emergency department, operating suite, pediatric, neonatal intensive care, and inpatient areas at our Medical Center. A DRX-Evolution located in the emergency department captures exams for pediatric and other urgent care patients.

Making the move from CR to DR with the Revolution and Retrofit kits was relatively painless. There was little disruption in our operations, and now we are meeting the requirements of the Consolidated Appropriations Act.  More importantly, we’re improving the service and care for our patients. #radiology #DR

Click to tweet! Patients at OSF Saint Francis Medical Center get less radiation with digital #radiography http://ow.ly/mhBO30bz1Sz

Click to tweet! OSF Saint Francis Medical Center gains faster patient throughput with digital #radiography http://ow.ly/mhBO30bz1Sz

Debbie Heinz is the Radiology Manager for Ambulatory Diagnostic Services at OSF Saint Francis Medical Center. With nearly 300 employed physicians, 6,000+ employees and 609 beds, it is the fifth-largest medical center in Illinois.  Watch the video interview with Debbie Heinz at RSNA 2016.

Editor’s note: Want to understand your options for financing the move from CR to DR? Read the blog!