Patients at five western Sydney hospitals have become the first to benefit from a state-of-the-art medical imaging system delivering safer, smarter and more streamlined care.
The new radiology information system and picture archiving and communication system (RIS-PACS) is set to transform how Australia’s largest public health system captures, uses and securely archives more than 1.8 million medical imaging studies annually.
Now live at Auburn, Blacktown & Mt Druitt, Westmead, Nepean and Blue Mountains Hospitals, the RIS-PACS system provides clinicians with real-time access to x-rays, CT scans, MRIs, nuclear medicine scans and ultrasounds performed in public hospitals.
Once deployed at a total of 55 hospitals state-wide by 2023, the system will give patients access to their own images and results via an online portal, as well as SMS reminders of appointments.
More than one billion existing images are being migrated to the new system, which enables more streamlined information-sharing between healthcare providers by integrating with clinical systems such as the electronic medical record, patient administration system and enterprise imaging repository.
This will ensure a patient’s journey can be tracked in real time from image request through to diagnosis – storing key information, digital images and results for instant access by treating teams, no matter their location.
David Cernjul, Director of eHealth NSW’s RIS-PACS Program, said: “Involving radiologists, ICT specialists and medical imaging users in the design helped us to shape how they will use it to deliver better patient care now and into the future.
“It’s been a very successful partnership between the state’s digital health agency eHealth NSW, Western Sydney and Nepean Blue Mountains Local Health Districts (LHDs) and our industry partner Sectra.”
Following a competitive tender, Sectra was selected in May 2018 as the preferred vendor for the 13-year, $85-million contract, which includes software, third-party products and services, implementation and ongoing support provided on an ‘as a service’ basis.
Vicki Fleming, Director ICT Enablement, Westmead Health Precinct at Western Sydney Local Health District, said the RIS-PACS system was a game-changer which would modernise patient care across NSW.
“Having had close involvement in the design and build stages was absolutely key to implementing this system,” she said. “The clinicians who will use it every day are excited about the improvements it will bring.”
In addition to Western Sydney and Nepean Blue Mountains local health districts, the RIS-PACS system will also be deployed at Sydney Children’s Hospitals Network, the Forensic and Analytical Science Service (NSW Health Pathology) as well as at facilities in the Central Coast, Illawarra Shoalhaven, Mid North Coast, Northern NSW, Northern Sydney, South Eastern Sydney, South Western Sydney and Sydney local health districts.
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