Time is an invaluable commodity for doctors, and as a result, they constantly search for any way to increase their productivity. In many cases, unfortunately, technology has yet to catch up with their need for efficient health care solutions.
As part of my education when I first entered the medical imaging market, I met with as many physicians as I could to understand how they used medical imaging in their practice. On one occasion, I met with a set of orthopedists just outside of Albany, New York. We were deep in a discussion about features, functions and frustrations, when one of the doctors turned to me and said, “Of course the most important thing about medical imaging is linking it to the rest of the patient health record.”
A Picture is Worth a Thousand Words
Since the accelerated acceptance of electronic health records (EHR), brought on by the adoption of the Affordable Care Act, patient records have existed separate and apart from their related medical images. There is no doubt that physicians unanimously believe that an integrated view of your medical image together with the textual description of your symptoms, test results and diagnosis would be more valuable than either of them separately. So, why do they remain detached? Why does EHR PACS integration matter?
Earlier this month, the Obama Administration disclosed that it is working on "an important transition" for Electronic Health Record incentive program. They claim to be working with physicians to make improvements in technology to best support clinicians and their patients. Updates are promised in the coming months.