E-Health Insider is pleased to present a news digest on the important topic of picture archiving and communications systems (PACS), featuring important recent developments and new product announcements.
PACS passes halfway stage in London and South
The programme to deploy picture archiving and communications systems (PACS) in London and the South of England has passed the halfway stage.
The milestone was passed 16 months after the first PACS from NHS Connecting for Health (CfH) went live in the London cluster. Some 33 trusts have now rolled out PACS in the two clusters under the £12.4bn NHS National Programme for IT.
By the beginning of August the Southern Cluster of NHS CfH reported that that 22 PACS and 20 Radiology Information Systems (RIS) had been deployed. According to CfH PACS is now deployed to 57% of sites in the Southern cluster.
New connectivity in obstetrics and gynaecology
EuroKing Miracle, maternity information system specialists and distributors of GE Healthcare’s ViewPoint, say the latest version of ViewPoint enables extensive connectivity by supporting DICOM-SR, Worklists, and DICOM query/retrieve to all the national programme PACS systems.
“Now, a complete picture of information exchange is possible because scheduled appointments can be queried from PACS and sent to ultrasound machines, and captured images, video and reports can be sent to PACS for long-term storage instead of keeping this data in ViewPoint,” say EuroKing Miracle.
This new functionality adds to ViewPoint’s existing support for HL7 and order management, to allow reporting data to be exchanged with radiology systems.
The advances aim to bridge the gap between national offerings and clinical needs by providing specialist capability to fully document all obstetric and gynaecological ultrasound examinations and procedures, offering connectivity to Brahms’ Kryptor, inclusion of Nuchal Translucency Risk Assessment, and now with broader capabilities of fully connecting to existing RIS and PACS systems.
Cardiff implements city-wide PACS from Agfa
Cardiff and Vale NHS Trust has announced it has gone live with an Agfa PACS solution that allows it to transfer images between its nine sites in and around the Welsh capital.
The trust, which is the largest in Wales, has claimed what it calls an "unofficial world record" in the transfer of patient data from old systems onto new, saying that 8.7 terabytes (8700Gb) were moved in two days.
Heart of England procures independently on PACS
Heart of England Foundation NHS Trust in Birmingham has gone outside the nationally negotiated NHS Connecting for Health (CfH) contract to tender for a full digital imaging solution comprising picture archive and communications system (PACS).
Earlier this month the trust has placed an advert in the Official Journal of the European Union (OJEU) for PACS, Radiology Information System (RIS), Computerised/Digital Radiography (CR/DR). The contract advertised is for up to seven years.
The advert was placed in the same week that NHS Connecting for Health announced that GE and HSS had taken over the PACS/RIS contract for the North West and West Midlands region.
The Birmingham hospital trust told E-Health Insider that it had issued the procurement notice based on the latest April guidance from Monitor, the regulator for NHS foundation trusts, on whether foundation trusts are obliged to take the systems procured by the National Programme for IT (NPfIT).
BUPA Hospitals select Kodak for RIS/PACS
BUPA Hospitals has signed an agreement with Eastman Kodak Company’s Health Group to provide the private hospital chain with an integrated radiology information system (RIS) and picture archiving and communication system (PACS) across all of BUPA's 26 UK hospitals.
The move will support the transition to a complete digital operation across the BUPA Hospitals network. Kodak will provide its Carestream Radiology Solution and Enterprise Information Management Solution platforms to enable image generation, storage and remote reporting within and between BUPA hospitals across the UK.
Canada Health Infoway signs agreement on Philips' iSite
Philips Medical Systems has signed a preferred solution agreement with Canada's national healthcare IT body, Canada Health Infoway, for iSite PACS, a solution for diagnostic imaging repositories and regional web viewing. Through the agreement, Philips will help provide customers with accelerated implementation of standards supported by Canada Health Infoway and implementation of a network of interoperable electronic health information solutions across Canada.
“We view this important relationship as an instrumental step in our growth as an industry leader in the radiology and cardiology PACS markets,” said Jeff Vachon, director of healthcare informatics, Philips Medical Systems Canada. “We’re excited to work with Canada Health Infoway, which has created a trend-setting project that will act as a global reference site for better technology and outcomes for Canadians.”