To further advance efforts to promote the simpler exchange of medical images between different types of viewing systems, the Radiological Society of North America and The Sequoia Project announced the initial class of vendors certified to achieve standards for exchanging images.

At its annual meeting in Chicago, RSNA and the Sequoia Project identified the vendors that have completed the RSNA Image Share Validation program, which tests the compliance of vendors’ systems to accurately and efficiently exchange medical images. The program is being expanded, RSNA and the Sequoia Project noted.

Genomic analysis at the Broad Institute of MIT.
Genomic analysis at the Broad Institute of MIT.

Image exchange has been challenging between different vendors’ systems, even when individual products comply with certain industry image standards, such as DICOM. For example, images often can’t be read on different systems or easily exchanged electronically.

The RSNA Image Share and Validation Program aims to improve capabilities for exchanging patients’ radiological exams between different systems. The vendors approved in the first class include Agfa Healthcare, AMBRA Health (formerly DICOM Grid), GE Healthcare, Lexmark Healthcare, LifeImage Inc., Mach7 Technologies and Novarad.

“From X-rays to mammograms, medical imaging is a critical component of patient care today,” says David S. Mendelson, MD, vice chair of radiology IT at the Mount Sinai Health System in New York. “CDs as a means to exchange exams were an improvement on film, but it’s time to move to a modern, more efficient mechanism—web-based exchange. Safe, secure internet-based image sharing benefits the clinical provider, radiologist and, most importantly, the patient.”

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Vendors that earn the RSNA Image Share Validation seal are demonstrating commitment to improve access to imaging records and enabling better informed decisions about patient care, while also improving patient safety by eliminating redundant radiology procedures, reducing operational costs and relieving the burden of responsibility from the patient.

Launched in 2016, the validation program encourages the adoption of image-sharing capabilities by imaging vendors and radiology sites, expanding access to medical images and reports whenever and wherever they are needed.

“Validation provides a number of benefits to providers and patients,” explained Mariann Yeager, CEO of The Sequoia Project. “Vendors who achieve the RSNA Image Validation seal are empowering their physicians to more readily exchange medical images with other providers and their patients across multiple technology platforms to enhance quality of care, improve efficiency, and reduce costs. There is also synergy created among the approved vendors to spur standards-based interoperability innovations.”

The program is intended for vendors of imaging systems, such as reporting systems, RIS and PACS, that wish to enable those systems to connect to networks for sharing images with providers and patients, or vendors of health information exchange systems that wish to enhance their systems to exchange medical images and reports.

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