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!

5 Articles on HIT and Radiology from the Past Week – Diagnostic Reading #48

Diagnostic Reading summary includes: the president of RSNA urges radiologists to expand their breadth of expertise; an RSNA16 presenter encourages radiologists to embrace evolving technology for cancer treatment; a new imaging technique could help create treatments for Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s diseases; the top three challenges for healthcare C-suite executives; and new 3D fetus modeling could help identify abnormalities.

RSNA President: Let’s get back to basics – Radiology Business

RSNA President Dr. Richard Baron’s opening address highlighted the dramatic impact of technology oDiagnostic Readingn the specialty and laid a roadmap for continuing to provide value-based care in a rapidly changing environment. He reports that physicians in other fields are becoming proficient at image interpretation, threatening the role of radiologists. He urged radiologists to focus on recapturing a breadth of expertise—learning about new diseases, drugs or surgical procedures—so they can provide additional value. Continue reading

Advances in Bedside Imaging: Delivering on the Dream

More Hospitals and Patients are Benefiting from Mobile Imaging

La versión en español de este post se puede leer aquí.

Demand for digital mobile X-ray is on the rise. That fact is documented not only by market research reports, but also by my firsthand interactions with customers. It’s clear that an increasing number of hospitals are taking advantage of the benefits of digital bedside imaging for their most critical patients—in the ICU, ED and OR, among other places.

No doubt, this increase in use correlates with the significant quality improvements seen in mobile imaging in recent years, thanks to advanced technologies such as digital radiography. But what do these developments mean for the radiologist, radiographer, radiology administrator and patient? And what can we expect for the future?

Fundamentally, bedside imaging brings the X-ray room to the patient, eliminating the time-consuming and logistically challenging process of moving critically ill or unstable patients. Continue reading

Diagnostic Reading #3 – Five Must Read Articles from the Past Week

Several top news sources recently published articles that contain helpful insights for radiology and healthcare IT professionals

This diagnostic reading articles describe how the Internet and mobile technologies have led to higher patient expectations, why radiologists need to maintain good relationships with other clinicians and patients to be effective, nine trends to watch in 2016, patient opinions on acceptable ways to share their health information and the latest tactics being employed for cancer detection and treatment.Carestream Diagnostic Radiology Articles

Eight-nine percent of healthcare providers say technology has changed patient expectations, according to a recent EMC report. Respondents to the survey, which polled 236 healthcare leaders from 18 countries, said more than half of their patients wanted faster access to services. 45 percent wanted 24/7 access and connectivity and 42 percent wanted access on more devices. Another 47 percent said they wanted “personalized” experiences.

While office colleagues are integral to a radiologist’s success, they can’t be the only other players to comprise the team. To be truly effective, radiologists must cultivate and maintain open relationships with other stakeholders – referring physicians, hospitals, technologists, and, most importantly, patients.

Continue reading

Fluoroscopy and Digital Radiography in One Room

Introducing the CARESTREAM DRX-Excel Plus fluoroscopy systems

Fluoroscopy has been around almost as long as the X-ray itself. Shortly after Röentgen discovered X-rays, practitioners projected medical images onto a fluorescent screen and stood by to observe the results in real time.

Today, the results of a fluoroscopic exam are “coupled to an electronic device that amplifies and transforms the glowing light into a video signal suitable for presentation on an electronic display,” writes Eric Gingold, PhD in an Image Wisely1 article (Modern Fluoroscopy Imaging Systems).  Dr. Gingold dryly remarks that this results in a reduction in dose to the patient as well as a “substantial reduction in radiation dose to the fluoroscopist.”


Carestream DRX-Excel Plus System in useAn idea whose time has come.

But traditionally, despite the fact that many of the basic requirements for fluoroscopy equipment were similar to those of X-ray equipment, the fluoro system required its own room—putting a strain on resources in crowded hospital radiology departments. And unless the requirement for fluoroscopy was especially heavy, the fluoro room was not fully utilized—while X-ray rooms were fully booked.

Enter the CARESTREAM DRX-Excel Plus fluoroscopy systems

These versatile systems can record both fluoro and radiography sequences and interventional procedures.

In an organization where resources are constrained, it is now possible to use the “fluoro room” for digital X-rays as well as fluoroscopic studies. And that can mean increased utilization, better workflow, and increased productivity.

Is your organization planning a new fluoroscopy room? Perhaps you should explore the more versatile DRX-Excel Plus System that permits both fluoroscopy and digital radiography in the same room. To learn more, visit drxExcel.com

1 Image Wisely is the organization dedicated to lowering radiation dose from medical imaging supported by ACR, RSNA, ASRT, and AAPM.

Jane_Duffy-White_CarestreamHealthJane Duffy-White, Marketing Manager, Carestream Health

 

X-rays and Mom — Case Study into the State of Imaging Technology

Reposted from Imaging Technology News (ITN) with permission.

While I write a lot about medical imaging technology and how new technology can and should work, it is not often that I get to experience how things actually work in the real world. This past Thanksgiving I received a call from a paramedic explaining that my mom had fractured her leg and I should stop working on the turkey and fixings and rush to the emergency department (ED) at Edward Hospital in Naperville, Ill. She had been walking her dog on wet grass and leaves in a park when her dog took off after another dog and pulled her down. She was whipped around and the change in weight caused her to dislocate her ankle (the bottom of her shoe was facing her when she looked at her feet) and caused a spiral fracture to her fibula.

ImagingTechnologyNews December-2015 X-ray_Fractured_fibula_with_permission_of_patient_MF

A bedside screen shot of a Carestream DRX mobile X-ray in the ED of the fractured fibula.

When I got there my mom was already heavily sedated due to the pain and because the ED staff had already put her ankle back in place. The ED doctor ordered a digital radiograph (DR) of her leg to see the extent of damage. They wheeled in a new Carestream DRX mobile X-ray system and I had a live demonstration of how fast these types of systems can snap the pictures. It called up the images immediately on the machine’s screen. The image of the Pott’s fracture with fragments was really interesting as someone who covers radiology, but I also realized from a non-clinical standpoint she was really messed up and in pain. Additionally, she would need reconstructive surgery to put her Humpty Dumpty leg back together again. She was way up the creek without a paddle with it being Thanksgiving and there were no orthopedic surgeons in staff due to the holiday. The day after Thanksgiving was not much better, as we found, since most physicians were out through the following Monday. So the ER splinted the leg, wrapped it in ace bandages and sent her home with heavy pain killers.

Compounding her mobility issues was the fact that she has bilateral knee replacements. Due to the trauma, broken bone and knowing she had these implants that further limited her ability to move around, she was prescribed a prophylactic anticoagulant.

Knowing we would need the images for a surgeon to review, I had the ED burn a CD. However, I was happy to find

ITN NEWS Orthopedic_Surgery_repair_of_Broken_fibula_with_permission_of_patient_MF_0

The post-surgical X-ray showing the bone repair, which was accessed and copied by the patient using a patient portal.

Edward is among the growing number of hospitals to grant patients access to their health records via a DR Systems Internet image/results distribution system. This technology pulls images and reports from the hospitals’ Epic EMR (electronic medical record) system and makes them available for remote viewing by clinicians outside of the hospital’s picture archiving and communication system (PACS). She also was given login instructions at discharge for a patient portal so she could access her records and images herself on a home computer or smartphone.

We managed to find one orthopedic surgeon in their office on the Friday after Thanksgiving. They thought it was great that we had a CD, but before attempting to open it, they asked which hospital she had been at. Edward was already in a health information exchange, so outlying offices such as this one from a different medical group could access her records remotely in less than a minute. They were able to call up her images and see what meds she was prescribed, which made the office visit go much faster.

She had surgery on Dec. 1, the Tuesday of RSNA 2015. The orthopedic surgeon practiced at Elmhurst Hospital in Elmhurst, Ill., across the county from Naperville. But, thanks to the remote image viewing system, they could get the ED images for reference and planning. The surgeon’s post-surgery DR image showing the reconstruction of the fibula also was available via my mom’s patient portal.

She did what most patients today do with this type of access and posted her X-rays on Facebook. Leveraging the Facebook form of patient engagement, the result was lots of sympathy, flowers and friends volunteering to help her with things around the house and groceries since she cannot walk or drive for at least two months.

While an unfortunate incident and a horrible thing to have happen to my mom, from a professional standpoint, I was happy to see the technology I cover working in the real world as it was intended. The speed in workflow efficiency, speed and ease of access to her imaging at the point of care and remotely, and access to a patient portal are all examples of how the healthcare system should work. In this case, the technology and imaging integration was flawless.

David_FDave Fornell, ITN Editor

Dave Fornell is the editor of Diagnostic & Interventional Cardiology magazine and assistant editor for Imaging Technology News magazine.

 


Imaging Case Study: Carestream Mobile DRX-Revolution

 

To learn more about the CARESTREAM DRX-Revolution, click here.

Top Five Blogs of 2015 on Image Capture Devices from Everything Rad

Since we just left 2015, it is a popular time of year to take a look back at the blogs that generated the highest interest
throughout the year. In this summary, we look at some of the most popular Everything Rad blog of 2015 covering technology advancements in ultrasound, full imaging rooms, fluoroscopy and weight bearing imaging.

  1. The Potential Value of Weight Bearing Images Acquired by Cone Beam CT – John M. Marzo, MD, discusses an institutional IRB-approved clinical study to comparing measurements obtained on a conventional CT scanner to those obtained on the prototype portable CBCT scanner – while the patient is standiThumb Up X-ray photong.
  1. Carestream’s New Fluoroscopy System [Demo] – The DRX-Excel Plus is shown in action. The video takes you through the various capabilities of this new fluoroscopy technology, including the various features and settings on its control panel and the different positions available on the system for a variety of exams.
  1. What’s the Big Deal about GPUs in Ultrasound Imaging? – If you’ve wondered how a little video game box could produce and destroy high-resolution, 3D fantasy worlds in the blink of an eye, look no further than the console’s graphics processing unit or GPU. GPUs are better equipped than CPUs – the central processing unit that processes data in most computers – to quickly compute functions and algorithms related to rendering images.
  1. Ergonomics Using the CARESTREAM Touch Ultrasound System [Video] – Carolyn T. Coffin, MPH, RDMS, RVT, RDCS, Sound Ergonomics, LLC, demonstrates in this video the ergonomic design of the CARESTREAM Touch Ultrasound System.
  1. A Closer Look at the New DRX-Evolution Plus System – The features and capabilities of next evolutionary stage of the CARESTREAM DRX-Evolution System: the CARESTREAM DRX-Evolution Plus are explored.

 

 

Whirlwinds of Change — What Can We Anticipate? Part Two

Digital Imaging and Healthcare IT Challenges: Advances & Trends for 2016

This post is a continuation of the piece that appeared here on EverthingRad on December 22, 2015. It covers additional imaging and IT trends projected for 2016.

  • Trends in Telemedicine

As Beth Walsh writes in Clinical Innovation + Technology, the use of telemedicine expanded significantly Image: View to the futureduring 2015. Now, REACH Health identifies telemedicine technology trends to watch for over the next year. Here are two of the most interesting:

Growing obsolescence of proprietary hardware and networks:  Proprietary hardware and networks were standard in the early in telemedicine technology. Now, providers are seeking more flexible solutions. Effective telemedicine can be powered by off-the-shelf PC components, standard, low-cost cameras and emerging networking standards such as WebRTC. These products allow providers to choose the most appropriate end-point – whether it be a high-performance cart, a PC or a mobile device such as an iPad or Android.

Richer clinical apps for physicians: To best recreate the bedside experience for doctors and patients, telemedicine solutions should support individual physician preferences. And, they should help healthcare organizations standardize treatment protocols. In response, telemedicine is becoming more adaptable, providing physicians the flexibility to specify how information is displayed and utilized – all within the boundaries of clinical protocols defined by the provider organization. More details here.

  • Digital Breast Tomosynthesis To Go Beyond Experimental

In October of 2015, Radiology Today published a piece on the present and future of digital breast tomosynthesis (DBT). Authors Lonnie Johnson, MBA, and Missy Lovell, BSN, RN, MBA report that DBT, due to its improved accuracy percentages in breast cancer screening, has already become more popular than digital mammography. Moreover, it requires fewer patient recalls for additional testing.

For these reasons, DBT is no longer regarded as investigational by most experts. Unfortunately, while CMS has made the decision to facilitate access to DBT exams by covering them, private payers have been slower to pay for exams – still perceiving the process to be experimental in nature. In turn, not surprisingly, this has created some difficulties for providers in balancing the demand for DBT with reimbursement.

Unfortunately, it takes time, evidence, and education for providers to accept state-of-the-art technology and approve for payment. A review and understanding of payer requirements and/or a discussion with the top payers is recommended to help DBT readily become readily accessible and reimbursable for patients who will benefit from it. More details here.

  • Sophisticated Imaging Technology Will Become Even More Dominant in NFL

The October, 2015 issue of Radiology Today placed a special spotlight on imaging the NFL – reporting how many teams are moving forward to bolster their capabilities with full digital X-ray, PACS systems and even MRI. The issue’s lead article, by contributor Beth Ortenstein, quotes Matthew J. Matava, MD – past president of the NFL Physicians Society, chief of sports medicine at Washington University, and head physician for the St. Louis Rams – as saying that all 32 NFL teams have X-ray units at their stadiums… and while some are older and some more advanced, all meet the requirements of modern imaging technology.

But bigger things are on the way: several teams, including the Buffalo Bills, Green Bay Packers, San Diego Chargers and San Francisco 49ers have bought Carestream DRX mobile and full-room systems for their stadiums. These systems are designed to accelerate weight-bearing, cross-table and tabletop studies of patients weighing up to 650 pounds, according to a Carestream spokesperson. What’s more, the recent agreement between the NFL and players to invest more heavily in player health is likely to accelerate this trend toward state-of-the-art being ready to go on game day. More details here.

For a closer look at Carestream’s full portfolio, please visit carestream/com. Part One of this article can be found here.

JianqingBennettBWJianqing Bennett, President, Digital Medical Solutions, Carestream Health

Video: Testing the New DRX Plus Detectors

The road to superb durability, reliability, and image quality can be a little bumpy. That is why we do extreme testing with our DRX Plus detectors to ensure that they are durable and able to provide reliable quality in the healthcare environment.

Checks such as the Bump Test, Vibration Test, Load Test, Humidity Test, Drop Test, and Water Resistance Test put the DRX Plus detectors in the most intense conditions. You can watch the video below for more details and see the tests in action.