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Proceedings Paper

Modeling The Economics Of PACS: What Is Important?
Author(s): A. O. Saarinen; D. R. Haynor; J. W. Loop; L. Johnson; J. Russell; K. Mitchell; M. Nemerever
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Paper Abstract

Picture Archive and Communications Systems (PACS) represent a significant long term capital investment for radiology departments and hospitals. Many radiology departments want to acquire this new imaging technology, but they are still concerned about the cost of these systems. While a few studies have tried to quantify the costs and benefits of PACS, these studies have been limited in scope. The University of Washington is evaluating a Digital Imaging Network System (DINS) and PACS for the U.S. Army Medical Research and Development Command. Part of this evaluation includes developing a comprehensive cost model of PACS for one of the military's large health care facilities (a 400 bed hospital). The paper summarizes the methodology and multi-layered spreadsheet model developed at the University to forecast the costs and potential cost savings this health care facility might accrue if a hospital wide PACS is installed and film is eliminated. It also discusses the many important assumptions made in the model. A sensitivity analysis of the model is also presented. The model indicates that keeping PACS maintenance costs down is particularly critical to the cost effectiveness of PACS. That is, the film cost savings attributed to PACS can be largely offset by PACS equipment maintenance cost. The cost effectiveness of PACS will also hinge upon whether a number of intangible benefits, such as referring physician and support staff productivity gains can be attributed to PACS. This model also suggests that the pay back period for a hospital wide PACS will vary significantly dependent upon the mix of tangible versus intangible cost savings incorporated into the modeling process.

Paper Details

Date Published: 25 May 1989
PDF: 12 pages
Proc. SPIE 1093, Medical Imaging III: PACS System Design and Evaluation, (25 May 1989); doi: 10.1117/12.953318
Show Author Affiliations
A. O. Saarinen, University of Washington (United States)
D. R. Haynor, University of Washington (United States)
J. W. Loop, University of Washington (United States)
L. Johnson, University of Washington (United States)
J. Russell, University of Washington (United States)
K. Mitchell, University of Washington (United States)
M. Nemerever, University of Washington (United States)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 1093:
Medical Imaging III: PACS System Design and Evaluation
Samuel J. Dwyer III; R. Gilbert Jost M.D.; Roger H. Schneider, Editor(s)

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