Radiology, which includes some of the most costly and high-tech surgical devices, was also under strain to slash prices. But since imaging applications such as x-rays, ultrasounds, CT scans and MRI scans are vital for the diagnosis and treatment of an infinite range of diseases, physicians and radiologists do not want to endanger the welfare of patients by allowing their imaging decisions to be influenced by cost considerations.
Fortunately, there is a range of creative cost-cutting measures to increase the experience of the patient and ensuring that the appropriate image services are delivered. Five methods in reducing costs of radiology by using innovative technologies and practices are given.
Smooth out databases and channels
Many medical facilities operate with various programs and technology that have been implemented at various times — resulting in time-consuming coping with multiple logins and unsuccessful efforts to get a device to connect with another. This can be especially difficult in radiology where various pieces of imaging equipment are used and the scans must usually be moved to other places for examination.
Ideally, all or most of the systems are available on a single portal, saving on technology service costs and enabling healthcare providers and administrators to concentrate instead of tech support on patient care. Interoperability has become a fact for many technology firms who use their resources to save money — and headaches — for hospitals and even hospitals seeking to improve their cumbersome structures.
Implement AI services that would make it easier for radiologists to operate
The skilled radiologist’s eye cannot replace artificial intelligence alone, whose technical expertise is essential to the interpretation of picture data. However, AI has shown the ability to refine radiology workflows by initially scanning images, sorting them and scanning images that may be more relevant.
For instance, French startup Avicenna.ai has created an emergency radiology triage system to minimise the workload of the radiologist. As AI and profound learning progress, this is a promising place for creative new businesses, which provide resources to help radiologists improve and faster do their work.
Eliminate the use of CDs for image transmission
Years back, when we saved files on CDs and moved them manually from one device to another? As most of us are used to SaaS applications, the introduction of wireless internet, WiFi, and cloud computing rendered CDs largely obsolete. But try reminding the average department of radiology. Many also purchase stacks of blank CDs, allow valuable personnel to burn photos on these CDs, and pay to be sent to the patients or other clinicians days afterward. Hospitals will also pay up to $8 to $15 a CD, and up to $100,000 on mail. This online calculator was developed by the #DitchtheDisk campaign allowing you to see how much money is spent on CDs.
A cloud-based software allows you to import, transmit and share images easily with just a few taps. Using a free, HIPAA-compliant cloud infrastructure will ensure that patient information remains secure and privately owned.
Reduce imagery redundancies
Very frequently, a patient is screened inappropriately again since the prior picture was not readily available. This is called redundant photography, and redundancy not only unproductively utilises the resources of both the patient and photo technology, but it can also be very expensive — especially whether it is a repeating CT or MRI scan.
The only approach to this costly issue is to ensure that pictures of a patient are visible via a full electronic health record, and that these photographs can be remotely downloaded to cloud providers. This reduces the likelihood that recent photographs are missed when a patient travels to a different place or sees a new doctor.
Introduce a dashboard for radiology
A new case study found that the Duke Primary Care system in North Carolina could reduce imaging costs by more than $3 million in just one year with the use of a quality radiology dashboard and the metrics for patients. The Duke Device providers receive a dashboard each month, and the opportunity to display peer comparison and imaging data seems to contribute to a substantial decline in the cost of imaging. This low-tech approach to data-sharing is a simple way for the buck to bang when it comes to implementing cost-saving radiology initiatives.
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