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The future of health care: customer insights drive innovation in radiology

November 08, 2016
Rob Cascella
From the November 2016 issue of HealthCare Business News magazine
The global health care markets continue to transform rapidly, and radiology is no exception. Recently, we have seen greater emphasis on disease-specific applications, simplified use enabled by intelligent workflow with better connectivity, and total cost of ownership all without compromising the quality of care. The overarching requirement is to "do more with less" through a "first-time-right" approach that enables an efficient and definitive decision-making process.

Radiologists are moving from the traditional transactional role in disease detection, localization, staging, planning and treatment assessment, to becoming a part of each longitudinal patient journey. We spend a great deal of time listening to our global customers. Although each may have specific needs, we also hear much similarity.

Here are the three most important areas the radiology community has defined as priorities:

1) As radiology grows, so does the amount of operational, financial and clinical data that exists across the health care system. The data is not readily interoperable or available to the staff. While there is a wealth of data in hospitals, it needs to become actionable information in critical areas like operational performance and variability. We foresee solutions that enable the delivery of customized, data-driven management approaches that combine imaging with services, informatics and analytics to provide insights within the existing workflow.

2) Imaging equipment maintains the reputation of being cumbersome and challenging to operate. By designing related software and smart algorithms with the radiologist's and staff's daily workflow in mind, we can enable practitioners to operate the equipment more efficiently and effectively. When practitioners are able to easily take advantage of new, advanced digital technology, exam times are shortened, recalls are reduced and images support more accurate diagnoses, ultimately saving costs.

As part of this, improved data sharing and telemedicine services enable hospital systems to collaborate with radiology experts around the world remotely. These new workflows will be game-changers in the pursuit of universal access to specialty care regardless of location, an elusive priority for many health systems and governments.

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