Vendors Achieve Interconnectivity at IHE Europe Connectathon
Product Showcase
Running the Numbers

Vendors Achieve Interconnectivity at IHE Europe Connectathon

The week-long Integrating the Healthcare Enterprise (IHE) Europe Connectathon, held in late April, tallied 1,600 tests on 117 systems from 67 vendors. The IHE is an initiative led by the Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society (HIMSS of Chicago) and the Radiological Society of North America (RSNA of Oak Brook, Ill); it aims to create a framework for vendors designing software, with the goal of complete application-to-application, system-to-system, and setting-to-setting integration across the health care enterprise. With participation from medical specialists and other health care providers, administrators, standards organizations, IT professionals, and vendors, the IHE works toward the adoption of standards to address clinical needs.

Intelerad Inc (Montreal) was one of the 67 vendors that participated in the Europe Connectathon; Intelerad previously had participated in the North America Connectathon in 2005, and the company will attend the 2007 Connectathon to test its InteleViewer image-display actor in multiple profiles.

“The IHE initiative provides customers with the freedom to choose the best systems for their requirements and minimizes the risks of encountering problems with system connectivity,” said Anibal Jodorcovsky, executive vice president of quality systems at Intelerad. “Freedom of choice and variety are key components to a well-functioning, free-market system that enables customers to select the vendors, products, and services that best suit their needs.”

At the Europe Connectathon, Jodorcovsky—along with Kent Tse, senior software developer at Intelerad—performed connectivity tests with the ImageManager, Time Server, and Time Client actors from the company’s IntelePACS solution. The tests were performed in two domains—radiology and IT infrastructure—across 10 profiles:

  • scheduled workflow;
  • patient information reconciliation;
  • consistent presentation of images;
  • access to radiology information;
  • key image note;
  • evidence documents;
  • nuclear medicine image;
  • access to radiology information;
  • basic security; and
  • consistent time.

“We had a chance to perform 60-plus integration tests with more than 15 different companies,” Jodorcovsky said. “We performed tests with ADT systems, order fillers, order placers, image modalities, image displays, and more. The Connectathon gave us an excellent opportunity to test in many different environments other than our client sites.” Intelerad earned a Gold Star (successful) rating for every actor-profile combination that the company tested, according to Jodorcovsky.

In fact, Jodorcovsky has experienced firsthand the setbacks arising from interoperability issues. “Owing to the implementation of the DICOM standard, we encounter very few connectivity issues between modalities and PACS,” he said. “However, up until a few years ago and even today, this was not always the situation when we start integrating different information systems.”

He sees interconnectivity coming to life, however, thanks to evolving IHE standards. “With the introduction of IHE and the rigorous testing conducted at the Connectathons,” he said, “we are better able to standardize the content of our HL7 messages.”

Quite a few PACS, modality, and hospital information system vendors that operate in the North American market participated in the Europe Connectathon. They included Agfa HealthCare, Cerner Corp, Eastman Kodak Co, FUJIFILM Medical Systems USA, GE Healthcare, McKesson Information Systems, Orthocrat, Philips Medical Systems, Rogan-Delft, Sectra Imtec, Siemens Medical Solutions, and Swissray Medical.

The IHE North America Connectathon will take place in Oak Brook, Ill, in January 2007, and additional demonstration projects will take place at RSNA 2006, HIMSS 2007, and the 2007 meeting of the American College of Cardiology. For more information about upcoming Connectathons, visit

—C. Vasko

Product Showcase

3D Reconstruction Software Upgraded

V2.5 of 3mensio?s 3viseon system enables better communication with referring physicians and supports the use of new monitor technology.

Version 2.5 of the 3viseon software from 3mensio Medical Imaging Inc (Bilthoven, Netherlands) is now available. The 3viseon solution facilitates 3D reconstruction of large CT and MRI data sets using standard PC technology; it can operate as a stand-alone 3viseon workstation, or it can be integrated into an existing PACS solution.

According to Frank Wessels, CEO of 3mensio Medical Imaging, the software enables users “to quickly deliver clinically relevant 3D solutions within the radiology field, based on off-the-shelf graphics cards and innovations from the computer gaming industry.”

The newest version of 3viseon features annotations and 2D- or 3D-captured presets to enable better communication with referring physicians. V2.5 also supports integration with monitors sized between 17 and 23 inches.

Russell Low, MD, medical director of the Sharp and Children’s MRI Center (San Diego) said, “The software provides very useful clinical information and quickly has become an integral part of how I evaluate MR exams.”

Running the Numbers

9 state-level regional health information organization (RHIO) efforts have been chosen to participate in the first-phase development of consensus on best practices for state-level RHIOs. Under contract from the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology, the project will produce public-domain information on best practices in health information exchange. States represented by the selected projects, which had to be of a statewide scope, are California, Colorado, Florida, Indiana, Maine, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Tennessee, and Utah. For more information, visit