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RamSoft helps PresGar establish digital mammography presence at eight imaging centres

RamSoft : 28 August, 2008  (Company News)
RamSoft has successfully helped PresGar, the USA’s largest privately-owned medical imaging service company, establish a digital mammography presence at eight of its imaging centres.
The result, which has taken less than a year to achieve, has increased efficiency among PresGar mammographers and technologists and substantial savings for the company. If things go as planned, a ninth center may soon join the mix, combining RamSoft’s PowerServer PACS and Gateway Routers with PresGar’s new digital mammography system.

“It’s a home run,” Dave Kost, Imaging Informatics Manager for PresGar, said of the integration. “We couldn’t be happier.”

PresGar, of Tampa, Florida, operates 36 imaging centres that complete an estimated 350,000 exams annually. To facilitate optimal viewing, 10 PowerServer PACS, some serving more than one imaging centre, along with three Gateway Routers have been installed by RamSoft, of Toronto, Ontario, Canada.

The digital effort began in October 2007 when the first new mammography system was integrated with the RamSoft technology. Seven other systems were added through mid-2008, and a ninth system will be implemented later this year. The new digital mammography systems, in New York, Virginia, Ohio and Florida, are replacing film-screen mammography units at each centre.

“PresGar was really our first big account in terms of establishing our solution as ideal for a distributed outpatient imaging center group,” said Vijay Ramanathan, president and chief executive officer of RamSoft. “The relationship has allowed us to prove that our solution is superior to anything else in that kind of environment.”

In making the move to digital, PresGar had one overriding goal: to enable the capture of superior images that can be manipulated for optimal viewing using the RamSoft mammography module. The PACS facilitates both on-site viewing and transmission to remote locations for off-site review.

Offered in several configurations, the PowerServer provides a reliable, fault-tolerant, web-based approach to PACS, accommodating unlimited users and workstations. Features range from study tracking from start to finish and unmatched real-time worklist flexibility, to prefetching of current and prior studies and flexible viewing protocols specific to modality and body part. A suite of clinical tools designed to optimise images and a digital dictation module also are provided.

An important component is RamSoft’s mammography module, which automatically sorts left and right digital image series and matches them to prior films for easy comparison.

“What we’ve done is make digital mammography function similarly to all of the other modalities offered by PresGar,” Ramanathan said. “That has eliminated the need for them to make a separate, costly investment in mammography. No longer does a company such as PresGar need to have one solution for all of the modalities and a separate solution for mammography.”

In less than a year the RamSoft collaboration already has benefited PresGar. The company saved hundreds of thousands of dollars by opting not to purchase dedicated workstations; film has been eliminated, also saving PresGar a substantial amount of money; technologists and mammographers are more efficient, enabling more studies to be completed and revenues to increase; the quality of images captured has been enhanced, increasing reader confidence and minimising liability; and images can be quickly and easily transmitted to remote locations. Clearly, RamSoft is playing an important role in PresGar’s transition to digital mammography and overall growth.

Numbers underscore that. Between 40 and 50 studies are completed daily at each site compared with 18 to 20 per day a year ago. PresGar’s overall efficiency has increased by 30 to 40 percent.

“Digital mammography combined with RamSoft PACS has saved us tens of thousands of dollars beyond the workstation savings, and that’s a big deal,” Kost said. “Imaging centers face a very tough climate these days, and we have to do what we can to be efficient and profitable. RamSoft PACS and its Gateway Routers have gone a long way toward helping us achieve that.”
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