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Recent blog posts

Share your ideas, visions and products!

I will give a talk about the following topics:


1. Continuing medical education contents for the radiologist of tomorrow. Tips and tricks for the radiology professional.

2. Teleradiology in the university context


If anybody has a great product or idea/vision they would like to share, I would like to add these into my presentation and acknowledge each of you.


This talk will be given at the University of Bern/Switzerland and also be distributed on Radiolopolis and shared in our LinkedIn and Facebook groups (>40k users)


This might be a great chance for you to make your ideas, visions and products aware to a large professional audience.


If you have contents to share, please provide as PowerPoint slides and ideally with images and references and email to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. no later than January 25, 2015.


Thank you.

Roland Talanow, MD, PhD

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KLAS examines growing Anesthesia Information Management Systems market

OREM, Utah - Jan. 14, 2015 
The classic tug-of-war between CIOs' need for system integration and clinicians' need for clinical quality has been answered by several anesthesia information management vendors. These findings, as well as which vendors offer the best clinical functionality and usability, are contained in the latest KLAS report.


"As this market continues to grow and new players enter the market, some vendors are learning to crack the code and deliver the system integration that CIOs are seeking with the clinical impact that clinicians are after," said report author Adam Cherrington. "It's more than just usability and functionality; it's truly impacting patient outcomes while achieving meaningful integration with other clinical systems." 
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KLAS highlights the client experience in healthcare for vendor BI/analytics products 

OREM, Utah - Jan. 8, 2015 
Healthcare providers report that vendor size and capability do not equate to client satisfaction when it comes to business intelligence (BI) and analytics products. These findings, as well as which vendors excel and why, are included in the latest KLAS report on the performance of BI vendors in healthcare. 

"Even though BI has been around for quite some time, providers are feeling an urgency to demonstrate value with the products they have, and they often look for that value in quick wins," said report author Joe Van De Graaff. "Vendors who are actively involved in helping providers demonstrate tangible outcomes tend to be seen as creating the most value."
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By Cristen Bolan, MS

Two major changes in health care—patient-centered care and value-based reimbursement—are transforming the way radiologists deliver care and driving the adoption of technologies that are long overdue.

In an increasingly connected world, health systems are looking for more effective and lower-cost solutions. Today’s challenging health care environment demands that clinicians find new ways to drive clinical performance, enhance the patient experience and ensure economic value for their institutions. 

Multi-purpose medical devices

Medical imaging technology, in many cases, has already replaced interventional procedures. Computed tomography (CT) has eliminated exploratory laparotomies because it is so accurate in identifying abdominal pathology; magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) has made it possible to acquire a vast array of information about structure in the body, and ultrasound has virtually replaced liver biopsies for patients with cirrhosis in Europe.1

In fact, recent advances in ultrasound technology has repositioned it a critical tool in diagnoses across a wide spectrum of medical problems. It provides value at multiple touch points across the health continuum – from hospital to home. It is the necessary handshake from a patient to a clinician, or a paramedic to an emergency medicine doctor to determine the next step in treatment. As there is an increased need for remote tools and better connectivity to improve care, ultrasound will become more essential as technology advances. To this end, Philips Healthcare is forming a multi-disciplinary Consortium to provide the infrastructure and expertise to help develop the future of mobile ultrasound innovation. (Source:

Image-guided procedures

The trend towards image-guided minimally invasive therapies continues to grow, requiring integrated solutions that enable physicians to optimally perform their procedures. Image-guided minimally invasive therapies, particularly those performed in the hybrid suite, are complex and technically demanding. They however provide key benefits for health systems and patients, including reduced patient trauma, shorter recovery times and shorter hospital stays, thereby contributing to lower health care costs. For these procedures, there is a clear need for the comprehensive integration of real-time information from all relevant technologies, thus making these procedures more effective and easier to perform. 

Patients first

Patient-centered care was a major theme again this year at the RSNA annual meeting. A major turn around in patient-centered care is the change in reimbursement models from fee-for-service to pay-for-performance or value-based health. In this scenario, radiologists are facing increased pressure to read more cases and report on quality. The focus on quality was a major theme at the RSNA 2014 annual meeting, as attendees were looking for ways to generate quality measures, improve data analytics and communicate these more widely to show they are delivering optimum patient care, reported Diane Clifford, senior marketing manager, diagnostic healthcare solutions at Nuance, in her blog, Top 3 trends helping radiologists with Imaging 3.0.2

To provide resources to radiologists in their quest to deliver patient-centered care, the RSNA and the ACR have established programs, Radiology Cares™ and Imaging 3.0™, respectively. Both initiatives offer online toolkits stocked with the resources radiologists need to build a modern practice focused on high-value, patient-centered care—including educational materials, case studies, videos and more. 

Need a customizable PowerPoint presentation to share with hospital administrators or community groups or a powerful video on the importance of conveying empathy? Want to quickly peruse media, trade and scientific articles on patient-centeredness? It’s all available through RSNA’s Radiology Cares: The Art of Patient-Centered Practice.3

Looking for ways to make your practice more successful? Need a quick update on accountable care organizations (ACOs) or help writing a mission statement and setting goals with associated metrics? Check out ACR’s Imaging 3.0 initiative. In Imaging 3.0, case studies spotlight radiologists who are already transitioning from making volume of scans read a priority to the value of the patient experience.3  

Connectivity and mobility

While not new, universal access to integrated electronic health records is well over. The ongoing trend toward integrating patient information aims to allow physicians, referring providers, and specialists to treat the same patient simultaneously or successively by accessing a single patient record, as opposed to redundant and inconsistent records for the same patient. This also ensures better data integrity.

The use of smartphones in health care is another hot button, as smartphones will transform they way clinicians deliver care. With everyone using their smartphones to check email, look at Facebook notifications, and even start their cars, it’s not surprising that radiologists also want to access patient records from their mobile phones, according to Clifford. The ability to get results on mobile devices and tie it back to a patient’s medical records is a total game changer,” said Megan McLendon, manager of Business Development and Innovation at Orlando Health. Another game changer, and from the looks of it, the patients might be the winners this time around. 


1.    Innovation, Patient Focus Will Help Radiology Thrive for Next 100 Years. Daily Bulletin. December 2, 2014.

2. Clifford D. Top 3 trends helping radiologists with Imaging 3.0. Healthcare IT News. Blog. December 5, 2014.

3.     Henderson M. RSNA/ACR Programs Lead the Way in Patient-Centered Care. July 1, 2014.

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By Cristen Bolan

The day when control over patients’ health will always be within hand’s reach is not too far off in the future. The number of health apps is staggering, with over 40,000 apps categorized as “Health & Fitness” or “Medical” in Apple’s App Store alone. Mobile health is “the biggest technology breakthrough of our time,” said former U.S. Secretary of Health and Human Services Kathleen Sebelius.


One of radiology’s luminaries is a trailblazer in the direct-to-consumer health apps, Khan M. Siddiqui, MD, a visiting associate professor of radiology at Johns Hopkins University. As a self-proclaimed serial entrepreneur, Dr. Siddiqui helps startups focus and raise funding, and he is the co-founder of higi, health stations that provide bio-metrics to consumers. higi stations are kiosks found at retail pharmacy, grocery and other consumer-targeted locations, allow users to receive stats on their weight, Body Mass Index (BMI), blood pressure and pulse. Users can track trends and changes in their body stats with a personal higi Score. The company plans to have approximately 4,100 high Stations deployed across the United States by 2015.  

Radiolopolis spoke with Dr. Siddiqui about the role of radiology in direct-to-consumer health apps.

Radiolopolis:  Can you tell me a little about how you have branched out beyond hospital IT and into healthcare start-ups?

Dr. Siddiqui:  I’ve been doing software development throughout high school and medical school. I see informatics as a tool to get things done. Software as a tool to communicate our health care experience. My work in medical school involved data mining. After my radiology training, I started exploring opportunities in informatics, and connected with Eliot Siegel, MD, at the Baltimore VA and helped him build their informatics lab and program. From there, I trained some many well-known radiologists, such as William Boonn. I then did a search start-up called Yottalook, doing semantic search for medical imaging, and then joined Microsoft for 4 years and then joined Higi. At Microsoft, I lead the medical imaging team and then it became multiple products. We did research on recognizing anatomic structures on medical images, which became the foundation for XBox Connect. Connect recognizes body parts. In addition to other products, we built a medical image archive in the cloud, and built the HIPPA-compliant infrastructure to do a truly cloud-based medical archive. In my last year at Microsoft, I worked on Health Vault.

Radiolopolis:  Did Higi evolve out of this?

Dr. Siddiqui:  In order to do anything in direct to consumer healthcare space – how do you acquire users. Based on organic growth in social networks, what we realized you need to figure an existing habit. What we realized was to do it fast you find how users are already engaged. When Google+ came out, when you reach 15% to 20% usage of adoption, your hockey stick evolves. Facebook took three years to get 10 million users. But with Google+ they got 10 million users in 16 days because those who had Gmail accounts, then they added another tab on the top and everyone became a Google+ user over night. That became my belief – if you want to launch a product you need to find an existing habit or existing user base.

In 2011, I received a call from Michael Farrell, who at the time was the Chairman of Merge Healthcare and he was trying to use social media in healthcare. I decided to join on March 2012, and Higi went from PowerPoint to where it is now. The total available health kiosks out there are used by 17 million unique users on a daily basis. We found the kiosks in the right locations and by the end of this year, we will have already deployed 6,000 plus kiosks nationwide.

Radiolopolis:  What are the biggest Trends in health care IT?

Dr. Siddiqui:  Direct to consumer solutions such as Higi. I divide it into two aspects of the grade. If you think of the informatics aspect and the infrastructure is evolving into next generation technology. From an infrastructure point-of-view, you will see more sensors. Even your cell phone has become a sensor; it tells you where you are, what you are doing, it captures your location data; it captures symptoms; will sense allergies; tracks calories and counts how many steps you are taking.

The same thing will start happening in the clinical environment and that becomes your infrastructure in the hospital environment. We have had the trend toward the cloud infrastructure where all of the storage data is centralized, now we are sending data from and to the cloud. From the informatics point of view, it is really the data. We used to talk about volume data overload in radiology—that is nothing compared to what the sensor data will bring in — it will bring in more data that is very complex. So how do you extract useful information and contextualize it and than the image volume data, and apply knowledge. There are many people who do informatics, and there are others who build technology to drive health care and generating that data.

Radiolopolis:  Are radiology groups taking full advantage of EHRs?

Dr. Siddiqui:  If you only have a prior exam from a year ago and all you can tell is there is change from year-to-year. If I have access to labs, and I knew the white blood cell count was high and the patient had a fever, and patient was a drug abuser, then you know it can be a cancer. If you are practicing in just a RIS/PACS environment, then do you do a biopsy or CT scan to see what it is. There are so many examples of disease entities and we cannot give an exact diagnosis because there can be so many options and unless you have the lab history or other information, it is very difficult to figure out. How do you get that information? That is where the gaps are. Most EMR workflows are designed for family care practice, not for radiologists. What is important for the primary care point? That is where the data shows up right away in the EMR. That is the frustration for the radiologist, the EMR is laid out as if a family care physician is looking at it and it’s not contextual to what the radiologist is trying to figure out for the patient.

Radiolopolis:  How PACS with the EHR will transform and help transition in value-based care model?

Dr. Siddiqui:  For radiologists to be part of a true-value based practice you need to know more about the patient. Our ability to provide a better diagnosis and add value to care is much higher. If you are only living in a PACS/RIS environment, there is no access to that information and in many cases there are so many options of diagnoses. How do you get that data? Most EMRs are designed for primary care and not for radiologists. That’s the frustration from the radiologists’ point of view, it is not contextual to what I need to determine. It’s difficult to find information in the EMR. For radiology to be a true-value based practice, you need to know more about the patient.  

Radiolopolis:  Where do you see mobile PACS and RIS technology going?

Dr. Siddiqui:  That should have been happening yesterday. There are so many scenarios where you need to provide information at the point-of-care where you don’t have access to your workstations, even from a radiologists point of view, it’s important to quickly look at data and provide feedback. Most value today is seen by non-radiologists that need to look at the patient data right away including images.

There used to be a wet read, but you still had to do a final read. Why not treat mobile as a wet read – you can see what is the problem is with the patient with the majority of CT and MRI scans. If you talk about value-based radiology and its much easier to part of the care team; you can’t carry along your PACS workstation with you but you can carry your iPad with you to see images, provide consultation, than stop at a PACS workstation.   

Radiolopolis:  What is your view of point-of-care ultrasound by non-radiologists and where do you see that going? 

Dr. Siddiqui:  I always see what benefits the patients first – does it benefit the patient if someone can make more accurate diagnosis than waiting for a radiologist to come along. The faster the delivery of care, the more quality, more value is going to win. So should the radiologist change their practice to be available to the ER docs immediately as needed. If I’m an ER physician, and I need to look at a gallstone and gallbladder, it’s so easy to just put a probe and look at it. People talk about the telescope of the future being an ultrasound. You can carry an ultrasound in your pocket now. You can’t stop that – it doesn’t help the patient to wait for radiologists to evaluate a vessel.

So what is the value radiologists provide? Evaluating malignancy and doing a comprehensive exam and consulting with the physician — that’s not going to go away. But if you tell me about doing drainage or putting in an IV line, that is something the physician is going to do at the point of care. The radiologist needs to value not just value to the physician but also to the patient. For us to survive as a specialty, they need to engage with patients. In our practice we used to reach out to the patient. In mammography, radiologists call the patient with the results. Each practice needs to design its own plan of engagement how to engage with the patient directly.












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