One of the largest concerns my customers face in the ultrasound industry today is the issue of structured reporting and DICOM with their newer or older ultrasound machine. I've seen some neat solutions and have recommended some in the past, but when it came down to really solving all my customers' needs, compromises were made in nearly every situation and I felt I'd been misled a bit. So, I stopped recommending these solutions.
A while ago a friend introduced me to Wael Elseaiidy, a legend in the small world of ultrasound programmers... he created the DICOM solutions for Philips and ATL systems: HDI 5000, IU22 and IE33 ultrasounds. I basically told my friend I was REALLY not interested in hearing about it, but he pushed on and said he'd been recommending this solution to his customers for quite some time, and he had never fallen short or needed to create a compromise. I was intrigued.
My friend was right, this product is different. I met Wael and as it turns out, he didn't duck questions or say "we're working on that." His product is called MEDStreaming, and if you've looked into this market at all, you've probably run across this company. If your research left you with questions about MEDStreaming, I can tell you they're the real thing. I've met them, I've seen the product, and I'm impressed.
Wael and I talked about the new EMR standards, and the fact that video tapes will soon no longer be accepted, and my customers were at a bit of a loss... the other solutions were junk or too expensive. Mr. Elseaiidy outlined the following for me in the meeting about his product's capabilities:
- Vascular, OB/GYN, cardiac structured reporting
- Report generation
- Modality Worklist support with Web-based scheduling
- DICOM data management
- Image Management and connectivity solutions
- Microsoft Office Interoperability
- Automated ICAVL/ICEAL/AIUM Accreditation
- Structured Reporting Based Reporting publishing and data mining
- Structured Reporting Based Data tracking and trending
- Streaming with sound
- CPT/ICD-9 Database
- Side-by-Side exam comparison
- HL7 interfaces
- Wireless HIS/RIS that is HIPPA and IHE compliant
But the key for me and many of my customers is whether it supports their older ultrasounds in a single or mixed environment. It does, but many older systems do not have Structured Reporting, so it's obviously not fully compatible. As of now, it fully supports anything from ATL/Philips from the HDI 5000, SONOS 5500 and newer, Acuson Sequoia, GE Logiq 7 and Logiq 9, newer Siemens systems, SonoSite, and Zonare ultrasound systems. For other systems, drop me a note and I can find out or put you in touch with the folks at MEDStreaming.
I like MEDStreaming as a DICOM, office management solution essentially because it's a relatively simple solution without a manufacturer's intentions in mind. It plays well with all ultrasound systems and it has solutions for your older, non-digital ultrasound systems. Most manufacturer's solutions provide limited capabilities for other manufacturers and it's quite annoying... plus, once you add other functionality the prices get ridiculous.
Other 3rd party solutions cost more than your ultrasounds, and are simply not realistic for smaller offices and hospitals. (And I know I'm going to get hammered with comments from the manufacturers for posting this.)
Since I'm a price/performance guy, this is at the top of my list. Email me if you have questions.