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Diagnostic imaging

CHUM extends PACS relationship with Agfa

MONTREAL – Agfa HealthCare announced that the Centre hospitalier de l’Université de Montreal (CHUM) will implement the Agfa Heartlab Cardiovascular solution for echocardiography image and information management, and upgrade its existing IMPAX solution for Radiology.

Expected to go live last month, in September 2006, the Agfa Heartlab Cardiovascular solution will manage images and information for approximately 12,000 echocardiography exams performed annually across CHUM’s three hospitals.

“As an expansion of CHUM’s existing IMPAX PACS (Picture Archiving and Communications System), this implementation will leverage our current infrastructure investments while providing many new benefits to Cardiology users and patients,” said Dr. Guy Leclerc, Chief Officer of Cardiology for the CHUM.

Currently, echocardiography exams are stored off-line on either VHS tapes or Magneto Optical Disks, making them inefficient to use for reference and comparison and difficult to distribute – a common need when patients are sent to another CHUM site for an exam.

The Agfa Heartlab Cardiovascular solution will maintain all echocardiography exams on-line, resulting in faster exam review between all three hospitals and dramatically improving report turnaround times and clinical effectiveness.

“The existing IMPAX PACS solution, operating successfully for the CHUM’s Radiology departments since 2001, will also undergo a technology refresh,” said Serge LeBlanc, Director of Hospital Services at the CHUM. “This will help us reap the benefits of new hardware technology and software functionality,” he adds.

“Implementing Agfa’s cardiology system provides the functionality and workflow we need to help improve care. We can take advantage of existing PACS hardware and knowledge, and it also allows us to use our existing echo carts from different manufacturers,” notes Lyne Marquis, Manager of Medical Electrophysiology Service at the CHUM.

The Structured Reporting component of the Agfa Heartlab Cardiovascular solution is another key reason for the implementation. “The French language Structured Reporting, which is nearly complete, is extremely impressive and will help improve patient care by providing quality reports that are more consistent and widely available to authorized users. Additionally, the resulting database of digital cases will help support the CHUM’s research and teaching objectives going forward,” added Marquis.

“The IMPAX upgrade and expansion into Cardiology is another example of how successful partnerships can evolve to drive business value in new ways. We expect to see CHUM’s Cardiology department reap the same benefits and improvements that the Radiology department has over the past five years. Integrating the information together is the key, and this is where Agfa excels,” said Michael Green, President and CEO, Agfa HealthCare Canada.

About Agfa
The Agfa-Gevaert Group is one of the world’s leading imaging and information technology companies. Agfa develops, manufactures and markets analogue and digital systems for the printing industry (Agfa Graphics), the healthcare sector (Agfa HealthCare) and film related products and specific industrial applications (Agfa Materials). Agfa’s headquarters are in Mortsel, Belgium. The company is present in 40 countries and has agents in another 100 countries throughout the world. The Agfa-Gevaert Group achieved a turnover of 3,308 million Euro in 2005. Agfa HealthCare supplies hospitals and other healthcare centers with state-of-the-art systems for the capturing, processing and managing of diagnostic images and with IT solutions that integrate information and imaging workflows into the overall hospital operations across departmental disciplines. In addition, Agfa is a leader in the fast growing market of IT systems that span the entire healthcare enterprise and through which healthcare facilities become more efficient and effective, with improved patient outcomes. For more information on Agfa, visit The Agfa Heartlab Cardiovascular solution is recognized as a world leader in cardiology image and information management. The system is installed in more than 480 leading cardiology centers throughout the globe, giving cardiologists rapid access to imaging exam and report information and providing robust protection for critical patient data.

About the CHUM
The Centre hospitalier de l’Universite de Montreal (CHUM) is a university hospital centre that provides specialized and ultra-specialized services to a regional and supra-regional clientele. The CHUM also offers general and specialized hospital services for its immediate service area. These services, which contribute to teaching and research and to the evaluation of healthcare technologies and intervention methods, are provided on an integrated network basis. The CHUM also contributes to the ongoing promotion of health through its front-line services. The CHUM was formed with the merger of three Montreal hospitals: Hotel-Dieu, Notre-Dame and Saint-Luc. The CHUM’s 10,000 employees, 900 doctors, 330 researchers, 5,000 students and trainees and 800 volunteers serve more than half a million patients every year.