The Future of Medical Imaging: 4 Meaningful Innovations for 2017

Improving access and precision, and decreasing costs along the care pathway

What lies ahead for the future of medical imaging? In 2017, Carestream is pushing the boundaries of engineering innovation in radiology in four important areas:

  • Accelerating processing speed
  • Expanding the parameters of 3D and 4D
  • Capturing images at the right place at the right time
  • Automating workflow

Accelerating processing speed of diagnostic images

Processing speed is essential to creating high-quality diagnostic images. That’s why we are constantly improving the way we reconstruct volumetric data across our entire portfolio of products. For example, we are incorporating graphical processing units (GPUs) like those used in gaming software to provide more and faster processing power where it’s needed.  GPUs can quickly compute functions and algorithms, reconstructing images in less than six minutes.

up close image of eye

In contrast, CPUs can take 20 to 30 minutes to render the same image. Faster processing not only creates better images; it speeds up workflow. And when imaging centers can increase throughput, they get a faster return on their investment.

Our advanced imaging science also shapes our DRX Detectors. We’re excited about continuing to push faster frame rates for our detectors.

Expanding the parameters of 3D and 4D

The application of 3D and 4D technologies have the potential to create better images for improved diagnostics in radiology. Continue reading

Diagnostic Reading #49: Five “Must Read” Articles on HIT and Radiology

Improving radiology reports and leveraging IT to improve efficiency are in the news

Diagnostic Reading summary includes: benefits of actionable reports; how to leverage IT resources to improve efficiency and quality; four strategies to improve radiology reports; healthcare providers experience challenges in transitioning to value-based care; and Asia is poised to replace Europe as second largest healthcare market by 2025.

RSNA 2016: Actionable reports can save money, patient anxiety – Radiology Businessmoney in a wastebasket

According to the Institute of Medicine, between $800 billion and $1 trillion is wasted by the U.S. healthcare system every year. And imaging plays a role in this costly cycle. Unactionable language in a radiology report can create unneeded exams—and radiology reports often contain vague wording. Aggregating usable data, clinical history, and relevant documents into a report can aid the referring physician in reaching a conclusion and delivers the best value to patients. Using standardized language and pre-populated text is important.

RSNA 2016: How to improve quality by leveraging your IT department – Radiology Business

A medical director of enterprise imaging urged increased use of IT resources to improve efficiency and quality. He tapped the IT staff to extract all relevant information about a patient from the EMR and automatically give it to radiologists as they place orders. He also eliminated the need for technologists to enter imaging protocols into equipment before each exam. The IT staff also implemented a system that allows radiologists to send short message services or text messages to other physicians—and when those messages are ignored, an alarm goes off until they are acknowledged.   Continue reading

Quantitative Radiology is New Paradigm of Personalized Precision Medicine

An interview with Dr. Luis Martí-Bonmatí of the Royal Academy of Medicine; Part 1

Haga clic aquí para leer esta entrevista en español.

Dr. Luis Martí-Bonmatí has held chair number 13 of the Royal Academy of Medicine since last Image of the frontal cortex depicting quantitative radiologyFebruary. In his inaugural speech as a scholar at this prestigious institution, Dr. Martí-Bonmatí made references to quantitative radiology and imaging biomarkers.

Recently, he explored the topics further in an interview with Everything Rad. This is the first of a two-part conversation with Dr. Luis Martí-Bonmatí.
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La radiología cuantitativa es el nuevo paradigma de la medicina de precisión personalizada

una entrevista con Dr. Luis Martí-Bonmatí de la Real Academia Nacional de Medicina

This Spanish language blog is also available in English.

Una entrevista con Dr. Luis Martí-Bonmatí de la Real Academia Nacional de MedicinaImage of the frontal cortex

El Dr. Luís Martí-Bonmatí ocupa desde el pasado mes de febrero el Sillón número 13  de la Real Academia Nacional de Medicina. En su discurso de ingreso como académico a esta prestigiosa institución, el Dr. Martí-Bonmatí hace especial referencia a la radiología cuantitativa y a los biomarcadores de imagen.

En esta primera parte de una entrevista concedida a Everything Rad (ER), el Dr. Martí-Bonmatí profundiza en el papel de la radiografía cuantitativa y los biomarcadores en el futuro de la medicina personalizada. Continue reading

AHRA Update: Stressful Changes Looming for Radiology

Cuts in reimbursement and imaging, new Joint Commission standards and increasing patient expectations were top topics at AHRA2016.

A “sea change” in the environment of care, cuts in reimbursement and new standards from the Joint Commission were among the topics causing heartburn for radiology administrators at the AHRA2016 annual meeting.Image of person showing stress to AHRA updates

Sarah Hostetter of the Advisory Board Company opened her presentation by saying that “the changes in healthcare are enough to induce the need for an imaging stress test”. She then delivered an informative presentation on the “Key Forces Shaping Imaging Economics” that include volume, growth and regulatory outlooks for imaging, and the impacts of consumerism and value-based care.

Added stressors came in the form of updated standards from the Joint Commission that were presented by Judith Atkins, RN, MSN, McKenna Consulting. “For most providers, most of their reimbursement comes from Medicare. So Medicare has the power and they drove the Joint Commission to change its diagnostic standards,” Atkins said. “The new parameters will dramatically decrease imaging numbers.” Continue reading

Diagnostic Reading #30: Five “Must Read” Articles on HIT and Radiology from the Past Week

Patient portals and growth of the X-ray detector market are in the news

Articles include: the X-ray detector market is expected to reach $2.9 billion by 2021; experts call for a national medical device evaluation system in the U.S.; a court decision could potentially change the role radiologists play Image of an x-raywhen it comes to determining the medical necessity of a study ordered by a referring physician; patient portals offer access to imaging exam results quickly while also helping patients track their own care and communicate with their doctors; and the Department of Veterans Affairs’ Million Veteran Program now has the distinction of being the largest genomic database in the world.

X-ray detector market to reach $2.9B by 2021 – AuntMinnie

The global xray detector market will reach $2.9 billion by 2021, growing at a compound annual growth rate of 5.5%, according to a new report from MarketsandMarkets. The growth will be prompted by technological advances, an increasingly elderly population, government and venture capital funding, volume growth of orthopaedic and cardiovascular procedures and reimbursement cuts for analog systems, MarketsandMarkets said.

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The Role of Infrastructures, Imaging and Data in Personalized Healthcare

Carestream product capabilities support precision medicine

Access to, and analyses of, large databases of patient medical records, associated information, and content-rich Graphic depicting personalized medicineimagery are core mechanisms for identifying precisely defined subpopulations – and the personalization of healthcare. Progress toward the personalization of healthcare is made possible by defining patient subpopulations that reflect minimized variability with respect to the effectiveness and prognostic outlook for specific courses of treatment. The data about an individual patient can then be correlated with the treatments that produced the best results (together with the associated prognosis) for the subpopulation of patients and pathologies having similar characteristics. Healthcare IT infrastructures, high resolution 3D capture, functional imaging and data analytics represent key elements for the advancement of this paradigm.

Significant capabilities that support precision medicine are already available from Carestream. For example, Carestream Vue Connect and Carestream Vue for Vendor Neutral Archive, and Vue for Cloud-Based Services provide powerful platforms that allow access to (and storage of) the vast amounts of patient imagery and information. Such access facilitates initiatives in the area of big data analytics. Continue reading

Diagnostic Reading #27: Five “Must Read” Articles on HealthIT and Radiology from the Past Week

Top news includes clinical decision making, EHRs and personalized recommendations in healthcare

 

This week’s articles include: radiologists playing a more active role in clinical decision making; use of EHR and CPOE systems create added clerical work for doctors; new systems can deliver a doctor’s personalized recommendations to patients to enhance compliance; a color-coded, user-friendly dashboard that tracks ER exams allows medical staff to better monitor patients; and companies are experimenting with ways to reach lower-income patients through apps, text messaging and video conferencing.

Radiologists Take On Bigger Role in Diagnosis – Wall Street Journal

At one of the top radiology departments in the country radiologists are now playing an active role in helping clinicians make medical decisions for their patients. Radiologists at NYU Langone Medical Center provide their analysis of imaging studies (via computer screen) as medical staff make their rounds in pediatrApplications in healthcare photoic intensive care units, where frail patients are imaged daily to monitor their progress. The initiative to involve radiologists in making treatment decisions is led by Michael Recht, chairman of the radiology department, who oversees more than 200 physicians
and researchers.

EHRs are making things harder for physicians – DotMed Healthcare Business News

Physicians who used an EHR and CPOE were 30 percent less likely to be satisfied with clerical burden, according to a Mayo Clinic physician who was the lead author of a study. Doctors spend hours placing orders for patient procedures such as imaging exams and lab tests and are also spending more than 10 hours a week using the EHR on nights and weekends, according to the study. Continue reading

The Next Generation of Multi-Media Reporting in Radiology

Interactive features can boost referrals, and foster collaboration and communication

For decades, radiology reports have been limited to a short paragraph that describes a radiologist’s findings. If key images were available, they were often difficult Survey shows physicians prefer multi-media reportsfor clinicians to access and were not part of the report content.

The next generation of reporting contains hyperlinks as part of the radiologist’s findings so clinicians can easily view key images, measurement tables and graphs. These interactive reports can be easily accessed from the EMR using a zero-footprint viewer that delivers rapid access to key findings and data from multiple “ologies,” and provides side-by-side display of DICOM and non-DICOM images. It is so intuitive that users can be proficient within minutes of use.

EMR-driven access also offers a single point of entry to the entire patient folder including clinical data in multiple formats such as images, video, waveforms and PDF-formatted interactive multi-media reports with embedded hyperlinks to key findings that provide secure access to images from mobile devices and computers.

A paper authored by physicians at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) found that radiologists and oncologists preferred having hyperlinks to key data in reports. In a pilot study presented at RSNA 2015, NIH researchers found that the use of quantitative interactive reports led to an average of nearly nine minutes in time savings for the oncologist to assess tumor burden when compared to traditional text-only reporting.

Facilities that offer multi-media reporting also could gain increased referrals from physicians, according to a study conducted by the Emory University School of Medicine. This study found that 80 percent of physicians would preferentially refer patients to a healthcare provider with multi-media reporting—and 79 percent of physicians are more likely to recommend that their peers refer patients to a facility with multi-media reporting.

Equipping patients to access their own medical images is also becoming an important ingredient for increased patient satisfaction. A recent study of 1,000 U.S. adults conducted by IDR Medical, an international healthcare marketing company, confirmed two compelling benefits for delivering a patient portal: 79 percent of patients said they would return to the imaging facility and 76 percent of patients reported they would recommend the provider’s services to others.

Enabling patients to access and manage their own images also has the potential to reduce overutilization of imaging procedures since patients can easily send studies to providers or bring prior studies with them to appointments. And patient care can be enhanced by sharing diagnostic, procedural and evidence-related images, video, waveform and multi-media clinical content directly from the EMR.

The adage that an image is worth a thousand words still holds true. Actually it’s worth more than that. Efficient and contextual access to medical images can help improve care by expediting second opinions while simultaneously building referrals and increasing physician and patient satisfaction. #SIIM16 #enterpriseimaging #healthIT

Kiran Krishnamurthy, Worldwide Product Line Manager, HCIS, CarestreamKiran Krishnamurthy is Carestream’s Worldwide Product Line Manager for Healthcare Information Solutions. He participated in a panel at SIIM16 on Communication and Collaboration Using Enterprise Viewers in the EMR

How to Build HIT Systems for Big Data to Revolutionize Healthcare Delivery

Big data needs the right health IT infrastructure to live up to its potential

There is a rising expectation that the application of “big data” in health IT will revolutionize the delivery of healthcare services across the globe. To achieve its potential, each healthcare organization must build an infrastructure that allows big data to work within its enterprise by:Image showing volume of big data

  • Handling large volumes of data and support very high speed data transfers,
  • Deploying a management system that can handle varying data types and sources, verify the quality of captured data and address the inconsistency of some data; and
  • Maximizing value by applying the clinical insights gained from data into practical uses that can drive the quality of care.

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