Every year before the Thanksgiving turkey has even settled, tens of thousands of medical professionals descend on Chicago’s McCormick Place for the largest radiology conference in the world. If you have never been to the annual Radiology Society of North America (RSNA) event, it is a sight to behold. Turn after turn, you run into extravagant booths highlighting cutting edge technology with live demonstrations aimed at catching your attention. While one vendor had a waterfall with the droplets forming their logo, another let you try on a set of augmented reality goggles, promising to be the future of surgery. And of course there was the host of shirtless men receiving live ultrasounds. Overall, RSNA is sensory overload. That’s why we at Purview try to keep things in perspective and remember that the most valuable aspect of RSNA is the people.
Once you have decided to make the switch from a traditional onsite picture archiving and communications systems (PACS) to a cloud-based PACS solution, there are a number of items you should be sure you are thinking through. Planning out your transition to the cloud can look like a daunting task without the proper guidance.
Having no backups is a recipe for disaster — literally. If a natural or man-made disaster strikes and ruins the images on your picture archiving and communication system (PACS), you would have absolutely no recourse. And yet, a good number of health care facilities we speak to seem to be taking this risk daily.
This is a guest post by Jyotin Gambhir, of SecureFLO, based in Arlington, Massachusetts.
Security is a crucial topic of conversation when discussing picture archiving and communication system (PACS) options. Image-based medical records are not only considered sensitive information that requires special handling, they also hold value from a cyber security perspective, as hackers and other threat actors seek to obtain secure medical information.
Given that these concerns can translate into significant regulatory, business and legal problems for health care facilities, security around PACS and medical image sharing is a critical conversation to have - but where should you start?
Many medical professionals, including radiologists and surgeons, rely heavily upon medical imaging resources. That's because, as part of their role, they need a way to access images for diagnosis, archive these images within a picture archiving and communication system (PACS) and share them with patients, as well as other medical professionals.
While this functionality is essential for providing quality care, what many practices often don't realize are the time and costs associated with maintaining an onsite PACS as their facility's data grows. With increased data comes an increased need for additional hardware, security protocols, IT staff salaries and expenses on utilities, including electric and cooling to ensure the hardware continues to operate smoothly.
For a practice owner, as these costs start to build, and responsibilities for managing hardware become a more costly and time-intensive task, you might be asking yourself, "How did my medical practice morph into a data center?"