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Proceedings Paper

Potential time savings to radiology department personnel in a PACS-based environment
Author(s): Allan O. Saarinen; M. C. Wilson; Scott C. Iverson; John W. Loop
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Paper Abstract

A purported benefit of digital imaging and archiving of radiographic procedures is the presumption of time savings to radiologists, radiology technologists, and radiology departmentpersonnel involved with processingfilms and managing theflimfile room. As part of the University of Washington's evaluation of Picture Archiving and Communication Systems (PACS)for the U.S. Army Medical Research and Development Command, a study was performed which evaluated the current operationalpractices of the film-based radiology department at the University of Washington Medical Center (UWMC). Industrial engineering time and motion studies were conducted to document the length of time requiredforfilm processing in various modalities, the proportion of the total exam time usedforfilm processing, the amount of time radiologists spent searchingfor and looking at images, and the amount of time file room personnel spent collating reports, making loans, updatingfilm jacket information, and purging files. This evaluation showed that better than one-half of the tasks in the file room may be eliminated with PACS and radiologists may save easily 10 percent of the time they spend reading films by no longer having to searchforfilms. Radiology technologists may also save as much as 10 percent of their time with PACS, although this estimate is subject to significant patient mix aberrations and measurement error. Given that the UWMC radiology department operates efficiently, similar improvements are forecast for other radiology departments and larger improvements areforecastfor less efficient departments.

Paper Details

Date Published: 1 August 1990
PDF: 9 pages
Proc. SPIE 1234, Medical Imaging IV: PACS Systems Design and Evaluation, (1 August 1990); doi: 10.1117/12.19010
Show Author Affiliations
Allan O. Saarinen, Univ. of Washington (United States)
M. C. Wilson, Univ. of Washington (United States)
Scott C. Iverson, Univ. of Washington (United States)
John W. Loop, Univ. of Washington (United States)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 1234:
Medical Imaging IV: PACS Systems Design and Evaluation
Samuel J. Dwyer III; R. Gilbert Jost M.D., Editor(s)

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