Kent NHS Trusts to Modernise Patient Diagnostics Across the Region with Sectra

SectraThe Kent and Medway Medical Imaging Consortium has procured a medical imaging system from Sectra to support faster diagnosis and earlier treatment for patients, and to increase capacity to meet growing demand.

Radiologists and other clinicians at East Kent Hospitals University NHS Foundation Trust, Maidstone and Tunbridge Wells NHS Trust and Medway NHS Foundation Trust, will be able to easily access images such as x-rays, CT scans, MRIs, ultrasounds, and more regardless of where in the consortium a patient has had their medical imaging captured.

Timely and more informed diagnoses and clinical decisions are expected for patients due to improved imaging access, and trusts across the region will be able to pool their resources and balance the workload of scarce radiologists and specialists.

Better discoverability and accessibility of images will also lead to enhanced patient safety by avoiding unnecessary duplicate scans and associated radiation exposure for patients. Additionally, the new system will introduce radiation dose monitoring functionality.

Known as a picture archiving and communication system (PACS), the system will be implemented across the trusts by medical imaging partner Sectra alongside its vendor neutral archive. Initially focussed on radiology and medical photography, the system also supports enterprise imaging, providing the potential to expand the programme to other diagnostic disciplines into the future - for example digital pathology.

Sue Lang, who has worked as programme lead for the consortium and radiology transformation programme manager for East Kent Hospitals University NHS Foundation Trust, said: "The new system will make important diagnostic images instantly available across our trusts to diagnostic reporters and people delivering care. It will also support improved access to imaging across a large parts of the South East of England, where many other hospitals also use the Sectra PACS.

"Patients can expect their imaging to follow their care journey - whether that’s within our consortium or beyond. For example, cancer patients often move to specialist centres, and others are referred to London hospitals as part of a trauma network and then come back to us, so it is key that we can easily share and access imaging."

Implementation is expected to enable trusts to respond to recommendations set out in Sir Mike Richard’s 2020 review into diagnostic services in England. And the consortium is planning to support the flow of images with new community diagnostics centres and with GPs in Kent, in response to the government’s initiative to bring diagnostics closer to patients and tackle the elective backlog.

The new imaging system will also support the consortium in making better use of the radiology workforce. Workforce capacity remains a national challenge in radiology and other diagnostic disciplines. The PACS will allow the trusts to make best use of workforce across the region. If one trust has greater capacity, the consortium will be able to draw on this, improving equity of care and speed at which patients get their diagnosis.

Specialists will also be able to provide their expertise without the need to wait for a referral. And home reporting, with the ability to have radiologists working from anywhere, will make it easier to recruit and retain people by offering improved working flexibility.

The PACS will support up to 1.4 million exams each year across the consortium. It will simplify the processes for multi-disciplinary meetings - with easy availability of images creating efficiencies. And the programme will reduce the need for staff to log in and out of different radiology systems. Third-party visualisation tools, for example, will now open and close in patient context in the PACS, and PACS-based reporting, integrated into the consortium’s radiology information system, will reduce the need for radiologists to manually access the RIS. The new system will also integrate into the Kent and Medway Breast Screening Service PACS, already provided by Sectra.

Trusts in the region will also be able to make the most of AI potential, with interoperable applications expected to seamlessly integrate with the new PACS and radiology workflows.

The contract was signed in April 2022 and draws on the Sectra One subscription model that allows easy scalability of the solution. Deployment of the system is expected to take place during 2022 and 2023.

Jane Rendall, managing director at Sectra in the UK and Ireland said: "Accurate and timely diagnosis is key to inform appropriate treatment. Trusts in Kent will become better connected with each other and with others in the region, as they modernise diagnostic imaging to ensure the best outcomes for patients and create the best possible working conditions for radiologists and healthcare professionals."

About Sectra

With more than 30 years of innovation and approaching 2,000 installations worldwide, Sectra is a leading global provider of imaging IT solutions that support healthcare in achieving patient-centric care. Sectra offers an enterprise imaging solution that provides a unified strategy for all imaging needs while lowering operational costs. The scalable and modular solution, with a VNA at its core, allows healthcare providers to grow from ology to ology and from enterprise to enterprise. Visit Sectra's website to read more about Sectra and why it’s top-ranked in 'Best in KLAS'.

Most Popular Now

Herefordshire and Worcestershire Health …

Herefordshire and Worcestershire Health and Care NHS Trust has successfully implemented Alcidion's Miya Precision platform to streamline bed management workflow across seven community hospitals in Worcestershire. The trust delivers community...

With Huge Patient Dataset, AI Accurately…

Scientists have designed a new artificial intelligence (AI) model that emulates randomized clinical trials at determining the treatment options most effective at preventing stroke in people with heart disease. The model...

A Shortcut for Drug Discovery

For most human proteins, there are no small molecules known to bind them chemically (so called "ligands"). Ligands frequently represent important starting points for drug development but this knowledge gap...

New Horizon Europe Funding Boosts Europe…

The European Commission has announced the launch of new Horizon Europe calls, with a substantial funding pool of over €112 million. These calls are aimed primarily at pioneering projects in...

Cleveland Clinic Study Finds AI can Deve…

Cleveland Clinic researchers developed an artficial intelligence (AI) model that can determine the best combination and timeline to use when prescribing drugs to treat a bacterial infection, based solely on...

New AI-Technology Estimates Brain Age Us…

As people age, their brains do, too. But if a brain ages prematurely, there is potential for age-related diseases such as mild-cognitive impairment, dementia, or Parkinson's disease. If "brain age...

Radboud University Medical Center and Ph…

Royal Philips (NYSE: PHG, AEX: PHIA), a global leader in health technology, and Radboud University Medical Center have signed a hospital-wide, long-term strategic partnership that delivers the latest patient monitoring...

GPT-4, Google Gemini Fall Short in Breas…

Use of publicly available large language models (LLMs) resulted in changes in breast imaging reports classification that could have a negative effect on patient management, according to a new international...

ChatGPT fails at heart risk assessment

Despite ChatGPT's reported ability to pass medical exams, new research indicates it would be unwise to rely on it for some health assessments, such as whether a patient with chest...

Study Shows ChatGPT Failed when Challeng…

With artificial intelligence (AI) poised to become a fundamental part of clinical research and decision making, many still question the accuracy of ChatGPT, a sophisticated AI language model, to support...

Virtual Reality Shows Promise in Fightin…

A new study published in JMIR Mental Health sheds light on the promising role of virtual reality (VR) in treating major depressive disorder (MDD). Titled "Examining the Efficacy of Extended...

AXREM and Highland Marketing Partner to …

AXREM represents member companies that collectively provide UK hospitals with most of their diagnostic medical imaging technology, and radiotherapy equipment. The association has seen substantial growth in recent years, with membership...