Cloud based Picture Archiving and
Communication System (Cloud PACS)
Modern Cloud PACS is not just an independent imaging box anymore that can only do acquisition, storage and distribution of images. It needs to coexist and stay connected with rest of the workflow components of imaging service. The workflow starts with an ordering system, goes through various clinical components and activities and ends with result distribution and a billing system. If all the components are within the same location, it becomes straightforward. Certain deviations such as ordering and billing systems not being at the same location, do not affect the imaging workflow. Also location independent reading environment for images generated at fixed locations is also well understood and practiced.
What if we need to make everything location independent – Ordering system, DICOM Modality worklist infrastructure, actual modalities, image acquisition, native or external diagnostic reading, native or external diagnostic reporting, workflow triggers, report distribution via email and fax, fax copies to multiple related parties, HL7 report distribution, image pointers to third-party EMR and billing triggers. And do all this securely in the public cloud.That is imaging ingenuity for smarter patient care and that is PICOM365.
This is not a theoretical exercise. The need is real for mobile imaging solution providers. Imaging equipment goes to patient homes or care facilities and acquired images are instantly sent to a cloud storage using 4G/LTE type broadband connections. The imaging solution providers generally use a custom EMR/business system to create orders and for billing. They may use several trucks with imaging equipment to perform imaging procedures. Within a few minutes after image acquisition they would like their primary reading physicians be able to read and report using native toolset. They also may like to engage external reading physician groups that may use other third-party PACS for reading and reporting. Once a report gets signed, they would like to fax the report to the referring physician, referring care facility that ordered the service and additional copies to other physicians and/or institutions that are involved with the patient care. Finally they need to get the report via HL7 ORU interface back into their EMR/business system for record keeping and billing purposes. They want to accomplish this with zero hardware footprint because they do not want to have in-house IT support or infrastructure.
PICOM365 cloud services connected to on-premises interfaces has accomplished this challenging functionality with uncompromised security and with no on-premises hardware footprint. This cost effective software as service model allows imaging service providers to dynamically scale their operations.