The following is the second installment of a four-part blog series about the value of VNAs. Click to read Part 1, Part 3 and Part 4.
An often overlooked – or perhaps taken for granted – benefit of VNA is security and compliance for all unstructured patient content
. There is a lot to chew on in that sentence. Let’s break it down.
Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center (CCHMC), a 600-bed academic medical center, faced the dual challenges of long-term image storage and lack of true disaster recovery for full-fidelity images. With the implementation of Merge interoperability solutions, these important issues were addressed, workflow was improved and CCHMC now plans to further expand its archive beyond radiology and cardiology, across all specialties.
While only a fool would claim that he could say with absolute certainty what the future holds, it doesn’t take fortune teller to see that success in the healthcare industry will increasingly favor the “connected” over the “disconnected.” In fact, a recent survey
found that 85% of industry stakeholders expect mergers and acquisition activity to increase in 2015 – meaning the newly created entities need to communicate and share data, including imaging information, efficiently and appropriately to ensure financial and clinical success.
Many of us in healthcare find ourselves at an interesting crossroads…We know we need to bring a higher level of interoperability
to our medical imaging processes, but we also know – or are at least beginning to realize – that it will take time, effort and money to do the job right and to do it well.
I’m fortunate to have the opportunity to travel all over the country and examine different hospitals’ workflow and challenges first-hand. From small community hospitals to large, multi-state IDNs, I have a 35,000 foot view of common workflows and issues. That’s because I work for a vendor. The clients I service aren’t so lucky. “Running lean” is the common theme of this decade. Every employee is doing the work of two or more people in the same 40, 50, 60 hour work week. Finding a half-hour to complete some actual research on new solutions in healthcare is a rare luxury. There are too many budget cuts, server failures, reimbursement changes, Meaningful Use attestations, software upgrades and then bugs and then patches, and oh yeah, that teeny little task of saving lives.