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Image management

Grey Bruce DI network expands

WALKERTON, Ont. – The Picture Archiving Communication System (PACS) of the Grey Bruce Information Network (GBIN) has reached a new milestone. The Walkerton site of South Bruce Grey Health Centre has connected to the central PACS system in Owen Sound and is now sending all of its images to Owen Sound to be stored on a long-term archiving system.

The opportunity is now available for the physicians of SBGHC to send an image instantly over the network, and to ask for support from specialists in Owen Sound. Both the referring physician and specialist can be reviewing the same patient’s image simultaneously.

An official demonstration of the PACS system was held at the Walkerton hospital. Members of the Grey Bruce Information Network, Kodak senior staff members, and local dignitaries were in attendance at the event. Kodak was selected over 10 other suppliers following an extensive selection process involving a steering committee from the three hospitals. A Kodak team of experts has been in the Grey Bruce region for the past six months working with the local PACS team to install and implement the PACS system.

There are approximately 206,000 imaging procedures provided to patients each year across the 11 hospitals in Grey and Bruce. The Kodak system’s information management platform will store those images and other patient diagnostic information electronically in one central location. The hospitals have created the GBIN to support this new initiative, which follows the successful creation of a common patient information system for the three hospital corporations and for the Community Care Access Centre.

South Bruce Grey Health Centre President and CEO, Paul Davies says, “The implementation of PACS at South Bruce Grey Health Centre will revolutionize our ability to serve our patients by substantially improving the speed of results and making this information available wherever the patients needs treatment.”

“The decision to move forward with PACS is an important step in the creation of an integrated healthcare system for Grey and Bruce,” said Davies. “PACS is essential to the creation of our Electronic Health Record, with all the benefits the EHR record brings to patients and our care-givers in improved patient safety and access to best practice information as they plan and deliver care.”

“We are proud to be a part of such an important initiative to provide excellent patient care to the region,” said Glenn Snell, District Manager for Kodak’s Health Group. “This technology will ultimately offer physicians the ability to consult sooner with specialists located in other areas of the region, in order that they may treat patients faster and improve quality of life. We complement the Grey Bruce Imaging Network team for the admirable efforts put forth on behalf of the community.”

Kate McKague, Manager of Diagnostic Imaging and Respiratory, said, “PACS will improve our ability to provide good patient care. An emergency physician in Walkerton and an on-call specialist in Owen Sound can view a patient’s diagnostic image at the same time, and thereby consult on a treatment plan or transfer. Because the images are stored in a digital format, the physician is able to manipulate them – lighten, darken, zoom, pan, etc. – if he needs to focus in on a specific area.”

McKague added: “The radiologist report is also stored on the PACS and is available as soon as the case has been reviewed, reducing our turn-around time from days to hours. Hospital staff with the proper security access can view images and reports at any computer in the hospital. Once the PACS system is fully installed, physicians at all of the hospitals in Grey and Bruce Counties will have access to their patient’s images any time, anywhere. This has been a wonderful joint effort between the three hospital corporations.”