Physical supports of digital images

In their internal workflow, the modern hospitals prefer a total digitizing. The medical and economical advantages of a filmless hospital are certain. The general wish is to use a cheap and integrated system, storing, transmitting and viewing the digital images.

For his diagnosis done in his department, the radiologist uses most often an application, whose advantages are the speed of the viewing, and the multiple tools of measurement and viewing.
For his diagnosis from home during the night or week-end duties, the radiologist can use a websolution.
The Pansys PACS links websolution and application; both systems use indeed the same database, are located on the same server, and allow an interactive teleconferencing even between application user and webuser.

The clinicians run their viewing through that websolution. The webaccess of the clinicians to the pictures can be done either directly, or indirectly through the HIS, that Pansys would integrate with the PACS/webserver.
But for the external relations (regarding the patient and/or his general practitioner), the concept of totally filmless hospital is still facing some fears and frustrations.

An electronic access to the pictures could be provided to the external physicians, or to some of them, by the websolution mentioned above.
But for most of those external physicians, and for the patients themselves, a cheap physical support of the medical digital images, remains welcome. It can consist of patient-CD, dry laser-printed film, printed paper .

1. The patient-CD is an easy and cheap piece of individual archive for the patient and his general practitioner. That CD can contain either all the digital pictures, or some of them selected by the radiologist. The CD can be burnt:

  • either individually and locally, on the CD-burner of the workstation on which the application software is installed and by which the radiologist runs his diagnosis;
  • or automatically and centrally, by a robot that burns CDs bearing the digital images and their viewer, and that prints on the CDs the identification of the patient and of his images.

2. Films can be printed, from digital images, by a dry laser-printer. If their aim is, not the diagnosis, but the simple documentation, the number and the size of the printed images can be reduced for limiting the use of such films and so the cost. Pansys proposes several types of dry laser-printers.
The application clients of the Pansys PACS can provide the protocol 'DICOM-print' able to activate such a dry laser-printing of films.

3. Sheets of paper can bear digital pictures of any format, including DICOM. The application clients, but also the webclients, of the Pansys PACS, can issue a PostScript (Print Standard) able to activate a paper printing whose resolution is unlimited (only limited by the performance of the printer).
In this case too, the number and the size of the images can be optimally selected.

The paper support reduces the cost of the reproduction of the digital pictures.

When the output of a modality or of a viewing station cannot provide a PostScript (Print Standard), Pansys can propose an interface converting the DICOM-print into PostScript (Print Standard). That converter "Paper Print Server" has to be installed on any PC (it could be the PC of the robot of CD-Imager). Since the modalities and viewing stations can usually issue a DICOM-print, that Paper-Print Server makes any modality or viewing station able to activate directly a printing on paper instead of film.