Picture Archive and Communication System
Q: What is PACS?
A: PACS stands for Picture Archive and Communication System. In a PACS system, Medical Images are stored electronically and viewed via a secure computer.
Q: How can I receive training so I know how to use our PACS system?
A: A dedicated PACS Associate who is also a licensed Medical Radiographer is part of the Medical Imaging staff and this person can assist you with initial or advanced training. The PACS Associate can be reached Mon – Friday from 8:00 am to 4:30 pm at (315) 448-5274.
Q: What will I be able to view on our PACS System?
A: All Medical Imaging studies performed in the Medical Imaging department at St. Joseph's Hospital Health Center including the Medical Office Centre facility are available for viewing via our PACS system from the Physician Portal, our HRS-D PACS web viewer or any dedicated stand alone PACS workstation. Some older imaging studies, prior to 2005, maybe available on film.
Q: How will PACS enhance my office practice?
A: PACS should help make your office practice more effective by allowing you to view images at anytime and from multiple locations. You will be able to speak with a Radiologist who could be looking at the same images you are even though you are not in the same room as this Radiologist. This is a function that could not be done with single film based imaging.
Q: What if I do not have Internet or the Physician Portal access on my office computer?
A: If you are a caregiver outside of our organization, a CD can be burned for you. This CD will have the medical images you need to see as well as an image viewer software program. The image viewer software program will work on any windows based PC. If the imaging report was completed prior to when the CD was created, the CD may also contain the medical imaging report(s) specific to the exam(s) on this CD. If you are a St. Joseph’s Hospital Health Center caregiver, you can also view our images via the Physician Portal, the HRS-D PACS viewer or directly from a dedicated PACS viewing station.
Q: Where should I put my PACS viewing station?
A: You should consider who would be viewing the PACS images. This will help you decide where to put you pacs viewing station. Keep in mind that you may wish to share images with your patients for purposes of review and teaching. A laptop combined with a wireless network is another example to consider. You will also want to consider our Hospitals HIPPA regulations concerning our patient’s private medical data when deciding on a location for a PACS viewing station.
Q: What can non-Radiologist physicians do now when getting ready to use the PACS system?
A: Since the PACS system will be primarily accessed through the SJHHC Physician Portal, we encourage you to take advantage of the features currently available on the Portal. These features include; access to the medical images created in the following modalities: Cat Scan, MRI, Ultrasound, Nuc Med, Interventional Radiology, Diagnostic Radiology and Mammography. The Portal also provides access to your patient's current medical information as well as historical results and information. You can also view Laboratory results, transcribed reports and your patient’s entire medical record on the Physician Portal. Proficiency on the Physician Portal will insure a smoother access to our Medical Imaging PACS system.
PACS Web Viewing System Requirements
Please assess your office PC's and Internet connections to make sure that they meet the technical minimal requirements for accessing our PACS system. Listed below are the technical minimal requirements. As with any system/software of this nature, you will always see more speed and efficient performance from a higher end computer running our PACS software as compared to an inefficient older computer also running our PACS software.
- A Pentium 4 PC processor (Hyper threading) 2.6 GHz or equivalent and higher
- 1 Gig of RAM or higher
- Windows XP 32 bit or higher
- A Video card with a resolution of 1280x 1024 in 24 bit or 32 bit color mode or higher
- 5 GB of free disk space or higher
- Internet Explorer version 6 or higher
- T1, DSL or cable modem Internet access. (No-Dialup)
- RSA Key fob for remote Physician Portal access
- Please contact your office's technical support provider to assess your equipment. For technical questions regarding remote Physician Portal access, please contact the Information Services Help Desk at (315) 448-5607