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The role of imaging informatics in real world radiology departments

by John R. Fischer , Staff Reporter
From the May 2018 issue of DOTmed HealthCare Business News magazine

“Maybe it’s just sunsetting a small PACS that’s used by women’s health and incorporating that into the radiology department, which just got a new PACS system and you’re not going to be switching over to a VNA anytime soon,” said Petersilge. “Or you might be at the point where they need to replace the PACS and they want to start looking at a VNA strategy. It’s going to be a lot easier to move ahead quicker when you can put that big foundation in at the beginning.”

The future of AI and imaging informatics
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The emergence of never-before-seen capabilities in imaging informatics and artificial intelligence are poised to change the way medical imaging exists within the continuum of care.

The emergence of smart work lists for prioritizing the most critical issues, as well as new guidance to ensure treatment and diagnosis are being done correctly, are poised to impact every facet of the hospital, along with new capabilities, such as 3-D viewing and printing, and innovations in older ones like RIS and PACS.

“Radiology departments are beginning to understand how crucial the electronic medical record can be to their practices,” said McEnery. “By integrating the entirety of the patient’s clinical presentation into their workflow, imaging departments are discovering new efficiencies that also provide improved satisfaction to the referring clinician and the patient.”

While the hype for AI may be bigger than ever, providers must understand that the impact of AI is still in its infancy with more research needed to better understand its capabilities and limitations.

“It remains to be seen if AI will be marketed as a stand-alone solution,” said Cannavo. “At this stage in the game, there are too few areas that AI has been approved for use on to make it financially viable.”

Still, the emergence of this groundbreaking technology underscores the need, more than ever, for imaging departments and hospitals to evaluate their workflow efficiency and what is needed to extract, synthesize and apply the most essential information to a patient’s care and treatment.

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