We previously reported on a study examining the impact of fatigue on the detection of fractures in bone images, noting that there was an average significant decrease in diagnostic accuracy of about 4%. We conducted this study because concerns have been raised that radiologist workloads are becoming so demanding that fatigue and reduced time for interpretation are negatively impacting diagnostic accuracy. In fact in at least one court case a plaintiff’s attorney has argued that a radiologist missed a breast lesion because he was overworked!
There has been a lot talk recently about electronic health records. Can those same principles be applied to radiology? Progress notes, lab results, medications, and allergies are not complementary information; and I strongly believe they are required components for good image interpretation. Is it fair to the radiologist and their patients that key clinical information is not available; or exists as a series of scanned images that may tell only half the story? Is there a reason why some clinicians are finding our reports less than helpful? “Garbage in, Garbage out”, was a familiar phrase of a previous colleague of mine.
Thanks for your strong participation and input to the 2013 SIIM Member Value Survey. What you said you valued most from your SIIM membership is the: 1) Annual Meeting, 2) Journal ofDigital Imaging (JDI), and 3) online educational content. In addition to our traditional focus areas of the Annual Meeting and JDI, SIIM members value online education, community, and IIP/CIIP career development. These are the exact areas of emphasis identified by our Board in the SIIM 2014-2017 Strategic Plan.
Recently, I got a chance to read over a listing of 50 of the country's Greenest Hospitals. These hospitals have found new and creative ways to help reduce their waste, increase recycling and in many cases cut spending significantly. For example; UCSF saved over 2.2 million dollars last year by reprocessing medical devices, reducing their medical waste and buying reusable pillows. One creative hospital, Community Hospital South in Indianapolis Indiana, piloted a program to make employee uniforms out of recycled plastic bottles.
Medical images come in many forms, and originate just about everywhere, including unexpected places. Images range from photographs of rashes, to EEGs, EKGs, plots of contrast injection curves, movies of arthroscopies and colonoscopies, pathology slides and gross path photos, ophthalmology images which may reside on their own PACS, and even photographs of printed pages.
As a first time attendee at SIIM 2013 Annual Meeting and the IIP bootcamp, I knew I was in for an eye-opening learning experience, covering a breadth of pertinent topics. Working in the PACS application specialist role for a little over a year, after 5 years as a nuclear medicine technologist, the transition to the imaging informatics world has been immense.
The SIIM Annual Meeting is a supercharged imaging informatics innovation incubator. It’s the focal point for industry leaders - new and established, large and small - to network with each other and with their most expert users. This allows the group to hash out new solutions and chart courses that move beyond traditional medical imaging IT. That’s the definition of innovation.
I am still excited by the energy and enthusiasm at the SIIM Regional Meeting in Philadelphia last month. With both familiar and new faces, the meeting provided the opportunity to talk with a wide range of colleagues working to improve medical imaging and clinical workflow.