by Lauren Dubinsky
, Senior Reporter | November 26, 2018
Siemens Healthineers unveiled its syngo Virtual Cockpit software for CT, MR and PET on Sunday at this year’s RSNA annual meeting in Chicago.
“One of the main challenges radiologists are having in their networks is to homogenize the examinations and have adequate staffing at the right site at the right time,” Oliver Klinkow, head of syngo marketing and sales for Siemens, told HCB News.
This software remotely connects expert technicians to less experienced technicians within their healthcare network to offer assistance during complex procedures like cardiac MR exams.
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“Nurses and technicians often have trackers on their arms to count their steps and some of them walk 17,000 to 32,000 steps in one day,” said Klinkow. “The amount of time they spend on the floor walking to different rooms is incredible. All of that time can be reduced and used more flexibly and efficiently by having a central location [that provides scanning support.]”
The remote technicians virtually connect with the on-site technician in real time via headsets, conference speakers or chat and video functions. They can provide verbal guidance or actually take control of the scanner via Siemens’ syngo Expert-i software.
An example of the type of guidance that can be provided is how to adjust the scanner’s protocol parameters for a specific exam. The on-site, less-experienced technicians can take advantage of this as a training opportunity.
syngo Virtual Cockpit also has the potential to help health systems cut costs. With this software, it won’t be necessary to transport expert technicians from one site to another and the scanner fleet can be utilized more efficiently.
“For the more advanced areas like cardiac MR, a patient might be in a network where it’s a procedure that’s only done on Mondays or only performed in the western part of the town,” said Klinkow. “[But with this] technology, you can much more conveniently offer additional scan times at the location in their hometown.”
syngo Virtual Cockpit will be available globally starting December 1.