Through Sectra’s solution, we gain IT support that is geographically and organizationally independent and that provides a seamless handling of care processes between both private and public care providers.
The regional public body is responsible for health, medical and dental service in the south of Sweden. With its ten hospitals, it conducts more than 900,000 radiology examinations annually.
Improved distributed radiology cooperation
By linking the hospitals’ radiology operations together in a single shared Sectra RIS/PACS solution, an efficient flow of images and information was created throughout the region, making the day-to-day work of the radiologist easier.
“Through Sectra’s solution, we gain IT support that is geographically and organizationally independent and that provides a seamless handling of care processes between both private and public care providers. The information is uniform, coherent, accessible and correct, which contributes to improved and more efficient care. Since only authorized persons are provided access to information, the exchange occurs with retained patient integrity,” says Peter Leander, Regional Chief Medical Officer at Skåne.
The infrastructure supports automatic sharing and distribution of radiology information to all departments involved in the radiology workflow. By enabling more effective collaboration and pooling of resources, costs decline and production increases because all information is available to everyone, regardless of location and regardless of what clinic the patient last visited.
An extensive migration project
In 2010, when the six additional hospitals were linked together with the first two in order to realize a region-wide system for the entire image and functional medical operations in Skåne, an extensive migration project took off.
Data from seven different PACS (Sectra, Agfa and Alfa) was migrated via DICOM into a single Sectra PACS. In total, more than 300 TB of data was migrated from the hospital. The transition between the old and new PACS was completed without downtime. All operations were performed on the planned day without disruptions to the activities of the radiology department.
“At 10 o’clock on the start-up day, the old PACS was stopped and the new one went into operation. All necessary preparations were made to ensure that the activities of the radiology departments would not be disrupted. This was crucial since the departments must be in operation 24 hours a day, seven days a week,” says Lars Hellman, Sectra’s technical manager for the project.
My long-term vision is access to all medical images everywhere throughout the region for all authorized personnel involved in the treatment of the patient. This would enhance work efficiency and security, ultimately benefiting the patients.
A patient-centered vision
In the beginning of April 2012, Region Skåne implemented Sectra’s solution for multi-disciplinary image management. Although medical images are used in numerous medical specialities, they are often not stored and distributed in a way that is efficient for the healthcare enterprise. Sectra’s solution ensures that all relevant medical images (including non-DICOM) are accessible when needed, regardless of format or where in the enterprise they were generated. Initially, the solution has been implemented at two clinics in the region, including the Department of Dermatology.
“My long-term vision is access to all medical images everywhere throughout the region for all authorized personnel involved in the treatment of the patient. This would enhance work efficiency and security, ultimately benefiting the patients,” says Lars-Olof Almquist, Medical Technical Manager for Region Skåne.
Physicians launch the import interface from the region’s HIS, and the system automatically displays the images available for the chosen patient. It also allows authorized users to conveniently add additional images to the patient’s folder. This way the user does not need to log in to several systems or search for images. Ultimately, this will lead to improved, more effective patient care. Sectra’s solution uses the existing PACS infrastructure when deployed, and thus Region Skåne leverages the investments it already made in Sectra PACS.
Together with Sectra, Region Skåne has developed a holistic approach to the radiology business’s IT infrastructure.