Viztek now offers iPad? functionality along with its OPAL PACS so physicians can view images even if they are away from the workstation.

Viztek, a leading provider of complete digital software and hardware imaging solutions based in Garner, NC, now offers iPad® functionality along with its OPAL PACS. Viztek has a proprietary iPad application designed for the convenience of moving throughout a facility’s exam rooms while always having access to patient information and images. This allows doctors to view images from a cell phone, tablet, or laptop, taking digital imaging technology one step further.

When Piedmont Orthopaedic Associates (POA) in Greenville, SC, finally decided to implement a PACS, they made accessibility an important criterion. Radiology Supervisor/PACS Administrator Nicki Cummins described the clinical value of the customizable iPad application as it relates to patient counseling. “One way that the iPads have helped is [when] we are using them to show the patients what their knee scopes look like. We can import arthroscopy pictures into Viztek, show their x-rays, and show their MRIs on those iPads. We bought iPads for everybody.” iPads are regularly in the hands of POA’s 15 doctors and assistants and are being used every day to show patients their imaging results. “You don’t have to take [patients] out of their room into another area to show them,” Cummins said.

An additional clinical benefit of the OPAL PACS iPad functionality is that it allows physicians to quickly review cases before going into the OR. “One of our physicians started using the iPad in the actual OR. We have [patient images] up on a big screen in the OR … but he can also have it sent to him on his iPad and get a glimpse before he goes into his surgery cases,” Cummins said.

Any physician in the Piedmont Orthopaedic Associates’ two locations can simply log in and get a customized display of their patients’ images on their iPad whenever needed. This technology can be used in emergency situations so the doctor can review the images and all the supporting information, such as diagnosis and family history before the patient arrives. “If a patient comes in to see us at the east side clinic in an emergency situation, but the doctor required for that specific problem is at the other office, they can just pull it up and see what they are dealing with and communicate a plan with the hospital. It keeps them in the loop,” Cummins said.

When choosing a PACS, Piedmont Orthopaedic Associates considered other factors, in addition to the convenience of the mobile app. Viztek was able to provide a PACS with displays customized to their specific needs. “They write their own programs … so you can tell them what you want and they’ll do it,” Cummins said. “They are not a company where I have to send in a hundred requests to be able to do that. When you call, you get straight to the source. I love that I can get hold of somebody anytime that I want them. There is never a moment when I ever have to wait very long. Even my smallest issue was a big issue to them.”

Asked about her favorite feature, Cummins replied, “Knowing how reliable it is. That is what makes me the happiest. I could have a day off and not have to worry about whether it’s going to work or not.”