Greg Freiherr, Industry Consultant
Greg Freiherr, Industry Consultant

Greg Freiherr has reported on developments in radiology since 1983. He runs the consulting service, The Freiherr Group.

Blog | Greg Freiherr, Industry Consultant | Enterprise Imaging| January 27, 2016

Radiology: Going Along to Get Along

Radiology: Going Along to Get Along

Siemens’ teamplay network brings together providers, knowledge and data to help radiologists solve routine problems, such as how to optimize radiation dose. (Graphic courtesy Siemens)

Radiology led the way as the first medical specialty to demonstrate that digital medical records could improve efficiency and effectiveness. The rest of the medical community has followed suit, leveraging electronic medical records (EMR) and enterprise imaging to draw medical specialties closer.

Ironically, this spread of information technology has threatened radiologists’ time honored place as consultants, raising the potential that other specialists might perform what had traditionally been radiological analyses. In response, organized radiology has extolled the virtues of putting the “patient first,” encouraging its members to look for ways to be more directly involved in the planning and administration of patient care.

The tools for doing so have begun to appear. In the Enterprise Imaging Technology Report at RSNA 2015:

Philips showcased Measurement Assistant for the radiologist and Oncology Dashboard for the oncologist. Measurement Assistant helps radiologists assemble the measurements of cancer tumors that oncologists analyze on their dashboard, complementing those measurements with additional information addressing patient treatment. Philips exec Mark Khalil told me, “This is the beginning of a collaborative sharing of results between the radiologist and the oncologist.”

Siemens described its teamplay network as the means for bringing together providers and patients, along with clinical data, in a way that accelerates decision-making. The goal, Siemens exec Arthur Kaindl told me, is to help radiologists “solve local challenges” such as optimizing patient radiation dose or making the most efficient and effective use of imaging equipment.

Sectra demonstrated how a mouse click on its Enterprise Image Management system can pull up all the medical images needed by a multi-specialty oncology board from ultrasound to mammography, microscopic images of a biopsy and specimen X-rays.

The use of these technologies will help blunt the threat that radiology might become an afterthought in the patient care process. But to truly join the team, radiology needs to read from the same playbook as the rest of medicine. To Cerner that means an EMR-driven workflow.

“The electronic medical record is the workflow engine for the care team,” Cerner exec Brandon Long told me at RSNA 2015. Long explained that the company’s EMR has been tailored to include radiologists, providing them the context they need to “help the care team take action.”

But PACS and RIS aren’t likely to go away, at least not any time soon.  In the parlance of MACH7 Technologies, they are part of an evolving “ecosystem” of information technologies. Different technological species — worklists, reporting solutions and diagnostic viewers — plug into the enterprise imaging platform offered by Mach7. This diversity is necessary, according to Mach7 Chief Technology Officer Eric Rice.

“I have yet to find a single PACS or viewer or portal or sharing or reporting solution that fulfills the needs of all specialties across all departments within a facility,” Rice said. 

Radiology’s experience and decades-long position in the digital world have positioned it to play a direct role in patient care. That may only happen, however, if the technologies underlying PACS and RIS continue to evolve to suit the changing needs of radiologists — and radiologists use them in ways that put patients first.

Editor’s note: This is the second blog in a series of four by industry consultant Greg Freiherr on Enterprise Imaging and the Patient. The first blog, “Meaningful Use is Dead … All Hail its Meaning,” can be found here.

 

Related Content

IBM collected a dataset of 52,936 images from 13,234 women who underwent at least one mammogram between 2013 and 2017.

IBM collected a dataset of 52,936 images from 13,234 women who underwent at least one mammogram between 2013 and 2017, and who had health records for at least one year prior to the mammogram. The algorithm was trained on 9,611 mammograms. Image courtesy of Radiology.

Feature | Artificial Intelligence | July 19, 2019 | Michal Chorev
Breast cancer is the global leading cause of cancer-related deaths in women, and the most commonly diagnosed cancer...
Johns Hopkins Named Qualified Provider-led Entity to Develop Criteria for Diagnostic Imaging
News | Clinical Decision Support | July 18, 2019
On June 30, 2019, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) announced the Johns Hopkins University School...
Anatomage Releases Anatomage Cloud Platform
News | Remote Viewing Systems | July 16, 2019
Anatomage Inc. released an update to the Anatomage Cloud platform that allows medical and dental professionals to...
Graphic courtesy Pixabay

Graphic courtesy Pixabay

Feature | Artificial Intelligence | July 15, 2019 | By Greg Freiherr
Siemens has long focused on automation as a way to make diagnostic equipment faster and more efficient.
Videos | Artificial Intelligence | July 12, 2019
Khan Siddiqui, M.D., founder and CEO of HOPPR, discusses the economic advantages and costs presented by...
Videos | Enterprise Imaging | July 09, 2019
ITN Associate Editor Jeff Zagoudis speaks with Don Dennison
Videos | Enterprise Imaging | July 08, 2019
ITN Associate Editor Jeff Zagoudis speaks with Don Dennison
Infervision Releases InferTEST Program at SIIM 2019
News | Artificial Intelligence | July 08, 2019
Infervision announced their InferTEST program at the recent Society for Imaging Informatics in Medicine (SIIM)...
Hyland Healthcare Adds ImageNext Imaging Workflow Optimizer to Enterprise Imaging Suite
Technology | Enterprise Imaging | July 05, 2019
Hyland Healthcare is launching ImageNext, a vendor-neutral imaging workflow optimizer that combines intelligent imaging...
TeraRecon Unveils iNtuition AI Data Extractor
News | Advanced Visualization | July 03, 2019
Artificial Intelligence (AI) and advanced visualization company TeraRecon announced its new iNtuition AI Data Extractor...