Online User Communities Help Companies and Customers Innovate Together

Join the Carestream health IT forum

Everyone has social networks; some online and others offline. These social networks are built around interpersonal relationships among friends, family and acquaintances. In contrast, the foundation of online communities is mutual Picture of the logo for Carestream’s VIBE communityinterests rather than personal relationships.

In healthcare IT, the common interest is using technology solutions to their fullest and sharing ideas for innovations to improve productivity and patient care. The online community becomes even more powerful when users of technology are connected to the provider of the solution, giving everyone a comfortable forum to learn and benefit from each other. As a result, new and deeper relationships can be formed, and a greater level of trust can be achieved.

Carestream has a worldwide virtual community for users of its health IT product portfolio, Carestream Vue.  The group, called VIBE (Very Important Board of End Users) is a forum for our IT customers to communicate, collaborate and educate each other – and with Carestream. Direct collaboration between Carestream and our end users is essential to making sure that our products are in synch with the market’s changing needs. Our users are very active in the online forum, with a 40% engagement rate – much higher than the industry benchmark of 15%. Here’s why they participate:

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Big Data : l’avenir de l’imagerie réside-t-il dans les chiffres?

L’application d’algorithmes va faire progresser les soins de santé préventifs

Arrêtez-vous un instant et prenez le temps d’observer les images que les radiologues sont en train de consulter. Elles pourraient bien disparaître complètement.

Dans un avenir proche, il se peut que les radiologues analysent des “nombres” plutôt que des images. Ce changement radical permettrait non seulement de faire un grand pas vers l’objectif fixé en matière de médecine préventive mais il pourrait surtout modifier le système de soins de santé dans son ensemble. Voici les explications.radiologue, visualisation, image

De nos jours, les médecins prescrivent des examens d’imagerie afin de déceler la présence d’une cause ou d’une maladie spécifique et généralement caractéristique. Les données de pixel acquises à l’aide de la modalité d’imagerie sont assemblées (ou reconstruites / affichées) pour former une image compréhensible par le cerveau humain. Les radiologues sont formés pour reconnaître, comprendre et analyser les formes, les ombres et les couleurs présentes sur cette image afin de poser un diagnostic.

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Diagnostic Reading #18: “Must Read” Articles on HIT and Radiology from the Past Week

HealthIT is improving care; expectations for radiology reports are increasing

This week’s articles include: executives support for health IT technology; need for improvements in radiology reporting; a Gallup survey shows healthcare costs are greatest concern for many Americans; two-thirds of healthcare organizations believe personalized medicine is having a measurable effect on patient outcomes; and a survey shows 87 percent of hospitals with financial problems regret changing their EHR systems.

88% of healthcare execs credit HIT with improving care – Health Data Management

Healthcare executives overwhelmingly see health IT as having a positive impact on their organizations, with 88 percent indicating that the technology is helping them provide better quality of care—according to a recent online poll of 164 healthcare executives.

Room for improvement in radiology reports – Diagnostic ImagingCarestream_Vue_RIS

Referring clinicians, payers, and patients are all demanding higher quality, which requires some degree of consistency and organization. Changes are necessary because current reports make identifying critical information difficult.  Continue reading

CIO Perspective: IDC Predicts Virtual Care Will Become Routine by 2018

Nearly 15 million Americans used telehealth services in 2015

Telemedicine conceptual illustration.

Telemedicine, telehealth, virtual care, teleradiology, telepsych – some of these terms we’ve been learning about for years, others are newer. And if the researchers at International Data Corporation (IDC) are right, we’ll all experience them ourselves, as patients, for years to come.

IDC recently released its healthcare IT predictions for 2016, and among them is a prediction that virtual care will become routine by 2018. Virtual care is defined as the ability to connect with physicians on an anytime, anywhere basis, such as a video visit with your doctor.

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Diagnostic Reading #12: Five Must Read Articles on Radiology and Healthcare Technology from the Past Week

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 ImagingCarestream Clinical Collaboration

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.

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Libro Blanco : Estrategias de Empresa de Imagenologia para Fusiones y Adquisiciones

Enterprise Imaging Strategies for M&AsTres 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

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Diagnostic Reading #9: Five Must-Read Articles From the Past Week

This week’s articles include: the limitations and applications of mobile devices in radiology; three things CIOs can learn from radiology analytics; how vendor neutral archives can reduce duplicate imaging exams; patients increased trust in the security of EHRs; and a study on communication errors within the radiology department.Doctors in Radiology Department

Analytics can illustrate radiology’s value to the healthcare enterprise. Radiology has a meaningful contribution to make within the context of value-based care. And artificial intelligence may transform the practice of radiology in the future. CIOs also need to understand the workflow of radiologists, and varying amounts of time required to read different types of exams. Continue reading

Diagnostic Reading #2: Five Must Read Articles from the Past Week

This week’s diagnostic reading articles describe the need to deploy Healthcare Vue for Radiology enterprise image viewers, growing adoption of telemedicine tools by healthcare providers, changes expected in data security, cloud and mobile technologies, why radiologists need to lead change and how patient-centric care can result in shorter perceived wait times and greater satisfaction.

Providers have more work to do to expand enterprise image viewing, which gives clinicians the ability to quickly view patient images without limitations on where they can view them, according to the results of a new HIMSS Analytics survey. The survey of 144 hospital, health system and ambulatory PACS/radiology leaders, follows a similar study conducted by HIMSS Analytics in late 2014 to gauge trends in provider adoption of enterprise image viewing. Less than half of respondents indicated that they use an enterprise image viewer to meet their diagnostic imaging needs.

Telemedicine tools like smartphones, two-way video, email, and wearable technology are becoming increasingly common in many healthcare settings. In 2014, HIMSS led a study that found that 46 percent of more than 400 hospitals and medical practices said they used at least one type of telemedicine. Additionally, the Academy of Integrative Health & Medicine (AIHM) found that 33 percent of U.S. healthcare practitioners offered healthcare services via telephone, video, or webcam visits, and another 29 percent planned to do so in the next few years.

Several industry analysts have forecast that 2016 will be the ‘year of action’ on many technology fronts, as several recent trends become commonplace strategies. Cloud computing, data security and mobile are tops among them. This article contains six predictions for what we can expect in 2016 on the mobile technology and cloud computing fronts.

Frank Lexa, MD, MBA, radiology residency director for Drexel University College of Medicine, calls upon radiologists to lead change “because if you let someone make changes who doesn’t understand what we do, it will be damaging to our industry and to your patients.” He advises radiologists to pick one project in one location, and demonstrate its value before spreading any alterations elsewhere.

Focusing on a patient’s satisfaction can lead to shorter perceived wait times and higher patient satisfaction, according to a study published in the Journal of the American College of Radiology. Anna Holbrook, MD, Emory University School of Medicine, and colleagues studied questionnaires completed by 147 MR outpatients who had received care from a radiology department in which “patient experience” was a stated strategic priority. The authors found patients often believed the wait time was almost half what it actually was and were satisfied with the experience.

Challenges of Stage 2 Meaningful Use Require More Allies

ONC, Meaningful Use, Stage 2

Click the picture to go to the HealthIT.gov website to learn more about Stage 2 meaningful use certification.

Stage 2 of Meaningful Use is a vital component to the initiative since it, as the U.S. government defines, “intends to increase health information exchange between providers and promote patient engagement by giving patients secure online access to their health information.”

As reported by Hospitals & Health Networks, only 140 hospitals have achieved Stage 2 of meaningful use. Throughout 2014, hospitals have been claiming that requirements such as this are more difficult to implement than originally thought. Assistance is needed in the form of decreased time for reporting periods or providers fear that they will face the severe penalties.

From the vendor side, to properly help providers, it is clear that we must be able to provide the answers to two key questions:

  • Can the technology be optimized with the existing solutions in place?
  • One of requirements for Stage 2 states that more than 5% of unique patients during the reporting period must use the hospital’s portal to view, download or transmit their health info to a third party. Since patients will be using the technology, is it intuitive and secure?

For both of the questions, I feel confident that Carestream would be able to answer, “Yes.” Our Vue RIS platform recently achieved Stage 2 certification, making it one of the first RIS platforms to achieve both Stage 1 and Stage 2 certifications. This means that those facilities using the system can exchange patient medical records and clinical documents with other certified EHR providers.

Beyond just being having an integrated solution, working with your clinical departments can enable capturing specific clinical data required: i.e. smoking cessation, BMI etc. In the case of the University of Virginia, the organization shared that radiology helped meaningful use attestation because it was able to capture the data that would not otherwise be captured.

With the Stage 2 certification, Vue RIS includes the following capabilities: family health history, the transfer and sharing of health information, and online patient access to information and communication. Additionally, the RIS platform can also be coupled with the MyVue patient portal to allow for patients to view their exam results, view and reschedule appointments, and also share the exam results with their primary care physicians.

Stage 2 of meaningful use has been deemed so vital to the future of healthcare because it is the first stage that involves the patients becoming ingrained in the process. As the patients become more in tune with their own health, we must make sure that we not only provide them with the tools to take action, but also the guidance and education on how best to use them, as well as the benefits these tools provide.

What have been your biggest challenges when working to achieve Stage 2 meaningful use? What have you been doing to combat these challenges, and what successes have resulted?

Cristine Kao, Healthcare IT, CarestreamCristine Kao is the global marketing manager, Healthcare IT, for Carestream.

 

 

 

Challenges to RIS+PACS Integration

Makori Arnon, Clalit Health Services

Makori Arnon, MD, MHA, Director of Imaging Informatics, Clalit Health Services, Tel Aviv, Israel

The world of radiology sees frequent use of the term “integration,” but this term can easily mean many things to different people. When used in conjunction with describing implementation of a RIS+PACS platform at a hospital, it demands we clearly define our expectations up front to minimize the challenges and disruption that can accompany integrating a new RIS+PACS platform into our workflow.

In the current environment we see that RIS, PACS and capture modalities are separate yet complementary entities that are really more bundled than they are integrated. We all know that RIS is a separate platform that is slowly being absorbed into the PACS or into EMR. PACS joins together both clinical information systems with the organization’s IT network and a successful implementation should have a very positive impact upon workflow.

Radiologists need to read images and dictate their findings, and being able to easily integrate images directly into the report via the RIS will help improve workflow. Integrating images into a RIS means that vendors will need to put more emphasis on developing improved RIS technology to provide higher-end throughput. By improving the RIS interface to better address workflow issues, a single-platform vendor will have a big advantage over another third party.

Carestream Radiology Information System

Integrating images into a RIS means that vendors will need to put more emphasis on developing improved RIS technology to provide higher-end throughput.

In the contemporary radiology department, knowledge is everything. This knowledge goes outside the walls of the healthcare facility with the advent of patient portals that allow patients to electronically access, store and share their medical images. With a well-integrated RIS+PACS platform, radiology professionals expect amplified clinical, business and IT benefits that include:

  • Greater value and insight resulting from the generation of clinically-rich reports
  • Improved workflow
  • Greater cost control and a streamlined data flow
  • Increased patient engagement and satisfaction with an intuitive patient portal; and
  • The ability to foster clinical collaboration without boundaries.

To achieve this, we need to improve upon the current integration process by providing a system or single platform for the reading and distribution workflow. Successful RIS+PACS vendors are making this a key focus of future product development activities.

Another issue to consider is that radiologists continue to change how they work. We are now seeing more “point of care” imaging where you have physicians creating medical images by capturing images with handheld ultrasound or endoscopy units. These physicians (not radiologists) are creating a workflow that is “orderless” or “non-scheduled”—and the organization will need to accommodate this workflow by supporting the input of these images into the PACS. Point-of care imaging is an integration point that we will need to see in future development efforts since it is clearly on the rise.

How is your organization handling the integration of RIS+PACS?

What will your RIS+PACS platform look like in the next 10 years?

Makori Arnon, MD, MHA, is the Director of Imaging Informatics at Clalit Health Services in Tel Aviv, Israel. He is also a member of Carestream’s Advisory Group, a collective of medical professionals that advises the company on healthcare IT trends.