Mobile radiography realizes its full potential Integrated, wireless workflows increase mobile radiography’s contribution to patient careWho/where The Radiology Department in the Galway Clinic in Ireland aims for excellenceRadiology Department, Galway ClinicDoughiska, Galway, Ireland in their service quality. Early in 2011, this led them to go digital with their mobile• Dr. Brian Lucey, Consultant Radiologist radiography. The Philips MobileDiagnost wDR the clinic acquired integrates seamlessly• Evelyn Smyth, Radiology Manager – and wirelessly – into the hospital network and the clinical workflow, reducing the• Susan Doheny, Senior Radiographer department’s diagnostic turnaround times. Within the department, the image quality and the unit’s flexibility allow them react quickly to variations in demand. Galway Clinic is a 150 bed, private clinic, which opened in June 2004. The clinic sees its mission as providing state-of-the-ChallengeEnsuring X-ray imaging for difficult to art acute and secondary care servicesmove patients in the intensive care that reduce waiting lists and attract andunit, emergency department, andpost-operative recovery. retain the highest caliber of health care professionals, to improve and support healthProviding back-up support for thegeneral X-ray room. care in the West of Ireland. The Radiology Department, for example, was the first to introduce PET/CT to the region. It is this Ms. Evelyn Smyth, Radiology Manager spirit of applying the latest technology for the benefit of patients that led them to the MobileDiagnost wDR. efficiency, particularly in acute areas of the hospital. The cable-free detector providesSolution ”We chose the MobileDiagnost wDR for comfortable positioning, and the highlyPhilips MobileDiagnost wDR mobiledigital radiography, a compact, because of its ease of use, its mobility, automated Eleva user interface allows rapid,maneuverable unit with wireless and its quickness in the workflow examinations.portable detector that facilitatesdiagnosis of immobile and critical within the department,” explains Ms.patients. Evelyn Smyth, Radiology Manager. The After the examination, the UNIQUEThe portable solution enhancesworkflow and efficiency of patient MobileDiagnost wDR delivers everything image processing software assures theexams through an intuitive user the clinicians know from their Philips radiographers can deliver great imageinterface and rapid access to digitalimages. high-end digital DigitalDiagnost room, in a quality, which the wireless integration compact, maneuverable unit. This lets the rapidly uploads to PACS. radiographers perform exams with increased
Quick, comfortable, and “The ease of use with the system is one of the The UNIQUE image processing software automatically greatest advantages,” says Ms. Susan Doheny, Senior optimizes the image, but the radiographer is free to Radiographer. For the radiographers, this starts with make adjustments at the patients bedside, before the outstanding maneuverability for getting around the transferring it. The multi-resolution image processing, hospital. Ms. Doheny notes that it is even possible for combined with the digital detector technology, helps to her and her colleagues to steer the machine with one provide excellent X-ray dose efficiency. “Also we’ve got hand. an instant dosimeter on the system,” says Ms. Doheny. The dose is recorded with the image for immediate At the bedside, the cable-free detector is quick to reference any time. position – not least because it is smooth and flat, and comes with an integrated handle. With the wireless The Eleva user interface is at the root of the ease with solution, there is no need for concern about cross- which the radiographers can use the contamination from cables. Some of the mobile units MobileDiagnost wDR. This is consistent across Philips the Galway Clinic looked at had detectors connected radiography and fluoroscopy systems, and was already by wire to the unit. Apart from the extra efforts for familiar to the radiographers. Eleva automatically sets cable management in the patient’s vicinity, which is often parameters according to the scheduled exam, view and already cluttered, the team was uncertain whether they patient type and therefore reduces the radiographer’s would run into hygiene issues if they had cables trailing interactions. The contribution Eleva makes to ease across the floors in different rooms. of use is also reflected in the training time needed. “Training takes approximately 15 minutes,” says Once the detector is in place, it takes the radiographer Ms. Smyth – rather than the hours typical for other one click in the user interface to access patient and equipment. examination data from the radiology information system. This sets up the machine appropriately and the X-ray can be taken straight away. A second click completes the exam, and sends the resulting image wirelessly to the PACS.
2-clicks to get a resultConvenience and efficiency boosteconomic valueAs the department’s manager, Ms. Smythvalues the convenience and time efficiencyof the MobileDiagnost wDR beyond thetraining effort. “The time saving withinthe intensive care is enormous, due to thefact that the patient’s management can bedealt with there and then,” she says. Typicalclinical questions in the ICU include checkingthe placement of NG tubes or surgicaldrains. Other clinical questions – commonthroughout the hospital, including in theEmergency Room or on the various wards– include diagnosing complications suchas pneumothorax, or potentially treatableconditions, such as acute pulmonary edemaor large pleural effusions. The mobilemachine is also involved pre- and intra- Dr. Brian Lucey, Consultant Radiologistoperatively. This lets the surgeons check thesuccess of interventions in close to real-time. “Using the MobileDiagnost wDR there Wherever the MobileDiagnost wDR is the radiologists, this access decreases theis really fast,” says Ms. Smyth, “because the in the hospital, it allows clinicians to turn report turnaround time. This benefitssurgeons can come out and review images examinations around in a shorter time. the patients, because a fast report – orbefore they go to the PACS.” “We book patients in straight away, take an immediate consultation between the the X-ray straight away, put images on the radiologist and other physicians – means network straight away,” says Ms. Smyth. This the referring doctor can make possible frees up radiographers either to get back to treatment decisions quickly. “Any potential the department quickly, or to provide extra complications which may have resulted from, services on location. for example, central venous access catheter placement, can be identified immediately, Making a difference to and therapy instituted,” says Dr. Brian Lucey, patient care Consultant Radiologist. Ms. Doheny identifies further time savings. Ms. Doheny adds an example from an “Having the ability to send images wirelessly emergency in the cath lab: Thanks to greatly improves efficiency,” she says. This MobileDiagnost wDR, the radiographer was wireless connection means an image can be able to take a chest X-ray straight away, to on the PACS within 10 seconds. It is available discover the patient had a pneumothorax. almost immediately for review, no matter The doctors then put in a chest drain, and where a doctor is in the hospital. And for she could take another X-ray to see the
difference. Previously, each of these imageswould have meant trips to and from thedepartment carrying cassettes and waitingfor processing. With their digital mobilesolution, no time is wasted in getting thediagnosis. “So in that respect, patient careis greatly enhanced,” she says. And adds tothat “Five minutes can make a big differenceto patient management, especially in anemergency situation where the patientbecomes unstable so quickly”. "Five minutes can make a big difference to patient management especially in an emergency situation"Ms. Susan Doheny, Senior Radiographer
Image quality enhances return on investment machine,” says Ms. Smyth, “was its use as a general X-ray When it comes to reporting, “clearly, image quality, to machine. Its qualities are similar to using an actual X-ray a radiologist, is paramount,” says Dr. Lucey. This means room. Its seamless and its a really handy backup unit.” primarily being able to answer the diagnostic question A solution for the future that a referring doctor has asked. This is a task the In fact, Galway clinic is now considering another MobileDiagnost wDR manages with top marks. The team MobileDiagnost wDR to cover all their mobile noticed an improvement in the quality of mobile images, radiography needs at a satellite clinic. As the uncertain compared with their existing CR system and what they patient throughput would make a general X-ray room a would have expected from any mobile radiography unit: financial risk, the flexibility of the mobile system makes “Mobile radiograph quality is now comparable to that it an ideal way to meet this need: “Instead of setting up a performed in the conventional (digital) radiographic general room, we decided we might go with the mobile rooms,” says Dr. Lucey. unit because of the quality it gives as a general X-ray room. This allows us then not to have a stationary X-ray room,” says Ms. Smyth. "Philips is enabling us to improve patient care here in the Galway Clinic" Whether it is at other sites, or in the Galway Clinic, the Radiology Department sees providing referring doctors with the diagnostic assistance they need – wherever they need it – as their contribution to patient care. This means taking full advantage of what the best technologies have to offer. “The MobileDiagnost wDR is"Mobile radiograph quality is now one of these really special things that you just feel part comparable to that performed in the of the future, moving forward with the technology”, conventional (digital) radiographic rooms" says Ms. Doheny. As a further element of aiming for excellence in the services they provide, Ms. Smyth is glad to say that “Philips is enabling us to improve patient care here in the Galway Clinic.” Because of this excellent image quality, Ms. Smyth points out that the department now also uses their mobile unit to help out when there is pressure on the general X-ray room. By wheeling the MobileDiagnost wDR into an empty room, it can work as a second general room. Because it sends the results wirelessly to the PACS, radiographers and radiologists even get the same level of service and access. “What excited me most about this