Access to radiology reports can help eliminate barriers and enable collaboration

Close-up of surgeons hands holding surgical scissors

The number of new innovations in health IT can be overwhelming. Hospital CIOs and administrators must help evaluate new software for referral management, applications for improved transparency, and analytics software. How can HIT directors and hospital administrators decide which technologies are worth investing in? Answer: start with the ones – like cloud hosted PACS solutions – that solve a real problem – like radiology staffing shortages.

Nicola Strickland, head of the Royal College of Radiologists, made a convincing case to The Observer in 2016 for “how the crisis in radiology recruitment will break the entire NHS system in Britain”. And in January 2017, AuntMinnie Europe painted a dire picture of how a hard Brexit would further strain the lack of radiology resources.

Other parts of Europe, especially rural areas, face a similar problem. The shortage of radiologists and other health professionals is driving medical providers with no formal or previous affiliations to find ways to pool their resources and collaborate among their sites.

Fortunately, cloud based services and teleradiology are toppling the geographic barriers. An increasing number of medical health providers in Europe are installing PACS – Picture Archiving and Communication Systems – and hosting them in the cloud. For example, Spire Healthcare, one of the largest private healthcare groups in the UK, enabled cross site reporting using the Carestream cloud. Using different cloud services from Carestream, Spire Healthcare can store and archive data to enable cross site reporting and then distribution of the reports and associated images.

Radiology journalist says new developments will support goals of improved accuracy and reduced risks

Miguel Ángel de la Cámara is one of the most active Spanish journalists in the field of radiology. With a goal of constantly increasing knowledge in radiology between professionals and patients, he combines his daily work as a radiology technician at Talarrubias Hospital (Extremadura Health Service) with his curiosity as a multi-skilled Illustration-of-mobile-phone-and-radiographyreporter. His work has distinguished him as one of the top influencers in healthcare in Spain . Everything Rad asked his opinion about the 33rd Congress of the Spanish Radiology Society held in Bilbao and the future of radiology.

What would you highlight at the Bilbao Congress from the viewpoint of professional radiology?

I think some important developments are emerging, such as the collaborative construction of knowledge. In radiology, everything is connected. Although radiology reports are the main value, we’re also creating value in many processes that were previously not so visible, such as the security culture or complex post-processing. I think we’re going far beyond radiology reports, although we’re forgetting, for example, about the enormous amount of radiology activity within primary care. Radiology is not only used in hospitals.

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.

  [caption id="attachment_5877" align="alignright" width="400"] An on-site or cloud-based teleradiology system can connect radiologists to reports, images, and patient history to provide efficient and effective care.[/caption] This week's Diagnostic Readings include updates on meaningful use, analysis of telemedicine growth, tips about dose management and more. Check out