Future of Diagnostic Imaging
Editor’s Note: This article by Kayt Suke was originally published by Healthcare Informatics and is reprinted here with permission.
As larger healthcare systems continue to grow, often merging with smaller regional and rural hospitals, information technology (IT) leaders are pressed to find innovative ways to deal with interoperability and data sharing across the enterprise. UnityPoint Health, a multi-campus health system in Iowa, needed to integrate a variety of radiologic and medical imaging systems across their rapidly expanding community.
Editor’s Note: This article was written by Evan Godt, Editor of Health Imaging, and is reprinted here with permission.
Early medical image archiving was focused on one main goal: the display of images. No easy feat, especially as storage requirements grew and physicians began to expect images on-the-go through their tablets or phones, but the mission of sharing images remained clear.
Today, however, some are looking ahead at the next generation of archiving and getting beyond the display, to take a deeper dive into image data—and that means more than simply reading imaging reports.
How can we improve the relationship between computers and radiologists? How can we make use of dark matter (all the information currently not being mined from our images)? How can we combine data sets to calculate critical conditions like malignancy?
The answer to all of these questions is big data. And if it sounds a bit futuristic, that’s because it is.
Percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI) procedures, commonly known as coronary angioplasty, rank among the most common surgeries performed in U.S. hospitals, with an estimated 2.48 million procedures a year. While that figure has declined 27% between 2007-08 and 2010-11, it still represents a significant portion of all cardiovascular surgeries.
As hospitals adapt to new payment models and treatment modalities, a lot of attention is being paid to evidence-based practices, including those related to cardiac procedures. The ideal of evidence-based practice is to provide clinicians with personalized, actionable information they need to make care decisions that reflect the unique circumstances of each patient. That information should be presented as close to the patient bedside as possible to facilitate in-the-moment decision-making.
Each year, about 45 percent of Americans set goals, make resolutions and strive to start the year off on a positive note. In enterprise medical imaging we too are looking at the year ahead and discussing predictions about medical imaging trends. Here are 5 predictions for 2015.
1. Data analytics will increase in importance and usage.
When we study dramatic failures like those that bring down power lines, we usually discover multiple issues. It’s the same with imaging — numerous forces have combined to decrease profitability, including saturated markets, a more complex patient population and declining reimbursement.
In her webinar, “2014 Imaging Market Outlook,” Sruti Nataraja of The Advisory Board Company takes a comprehensive look at all the factors contributing to imaging’s current state and observes the following:
- We’re getting diminishing returns from traditional growth
- The worst is yet to come with hospital reimbursement cuts
Indeed, we’ve found that creativity is the best way to generate customer value, and I am proud to announce that Frost & Sullivan reinforced that idea in its recent whitepaper describing its choice for McKesson as company of the year. In the whitepaper, “Amplifying the Value of Medical Imaging Services to the Enterprise through Efficient Workflow Solutions,” Frost & Sullivan makes the point that this notion is circular: creativity brings about customer value excellence, and customer value excellence reinforces the spirit of creativity.
Toys, shoes, dresses, musical instruments, fossil replicas, drones, cars and even houses are all amongst the many things being 3D printed today – there is even a specially designed 3D printer being sent to the International Space Station to be used to create replacement parts in zero-G.
The field of medicine is no exception to this revolution, and a lot of this is driven by medical imaging. In this post I’ve highlighted six ways medical imaging solutions and 3D printing are being used in combination now in the real world and also will be in the near future.
As healthcare organizations develop strategies to engage with patients, a number of challenges arise —especially when it comes to communicating with elderly patients. Almost 25 percent of elderly patients live in rural areas, more distant from healthcare facilities. They’re more likely to have chronic conditions such as diabetes, heart disease and arthritis. Communications strategies for the elderly may require special consideration and multifaceted tactics, even for digital platforms.
Editor’s note: Despite rising healthcare costs, inconsistent quality of patient care in healthcare organizations has necessitated a crucial shift in the delivery of medical care. Systems that seek change are beginning to transition to a value-based care approach that seeks to manage costs while giving the right care at the right time. As healthcare organizations move towards this new model, enterprise medical imaging technology will play a crucial part in the successful implementation of value-based care models.
This article was originally published by Cat Vasko on Health IT Executive Forum and is republished here with permission.