University of Rochester Medical Center

University of Rochester Medical Center’s enterprise medical imaging implementation helped break down silos and improve imaging sharing and collaboration.

Director of Rochester Medical Center (URMC) James Forrester says the two biggest issues faced in enterprise medical imaging strategy are siloed patient data and regional consolidation of healthcare organizations.

Both challenges are driven by the need for increased efficiency. Additionally, healthcare delivery organizations are under tremendous pressure to decrease costs while achieving value-based outcomes for patient care.

"That's difficult to do when patient data is siloed," Forrester says.

First steps in tackling enterprise imaging

When URMC committed to optimizing its enterprise imaging strategy, it developed an enterprise imaging roadmap and set up to implement a Hyland Healthcare solution.

"We started with the redefined or reconstructed PACS in radiology and imaging science, where we deploy the Acuo VNA," Forrester says. "It's the foundation of our enterprise imaging strategy along with a Philips IntelliSpace PACS as our enterprise viewer, radiology diagnostic viewer and Nuance Primordial Workflow Manager as our workflow manager."

This setup gave URMC the flexibility to reach out and embrace other image-generating departments like the cardiovascular service line and perinatology in maternal-fetal medicine. Other areas making significant progress are point-of-care ultrasounds and visible light images, especially those coming in from scopes.

Optimized outcomes

Acuo VNA serves as the foundation of URMC's strategy, giving the organization great flexibility in managing the petabytes of storage.

"It gives us incredible flexibility in allowing us to manage the data," Forrester says.

URMC used a hybrid approach, putting the VNA routing tier in between the modalities and the PACS itself and then the VNA archive after the PACS. This allowed the organization to manipulate the metadata and achieve true data integrity.

Additionally, this gets the images to the viewer as quickly as possible and allows teams to leverage the built-in reconciliation and data management tools that are in the PACS platform.

"The data is most likely to be pristine or clean when it goes over to the permanent archive," Forrester says.