Andover, Mass. – Royal Philips Electronics (AEX: PHI, NYSE: PHG) today announced that it is teaming up with eHealth Global Technologies, Inc. (eHGT), a company that uses pioneering information technology to retrieve medical records and images and securely deliver them electronically to health care providers. eHGT’s services are designed to reduce the time cancer patients spend waiting for their first oncology appointment by efficiently gathering diagnostic imaging and other data and presenting it on demand at the oncologist’s point-of-care. The alliance complements Philips’ strong portfolio of innovative solutions further helping to facilitate coordinated, multidisciplinary cancer care.
Philips has long enjoyed success as a purveyor of advanced technology in health care – and in oncology in particular – by offering advanced imaging, treatment planning, image-guided interventional therapy, home monitoring and IT solutions. Several years ago the company adopted a unique approach that focuses on how patients actually experience the pathway of care while confronting the challenges that hinder doctors, nurses and health care administrators from delivering streamlined patient-centric care. The eHGT alliance addresses an often uncoordinated handoff in the care continuum: the delivery of appropriately-formatted diagnostic scans and records – usually from multiple departments and locations – to the oncology specialist and treatment team.
“Anyone who has been touched by cancer knows that the waiting time between diagnosis and treatment can be very stressful and chaotic for patients,” said Pat Venters, general manager, Oncology Care Cycle, for Philips Healthcare. “As care becomes increasingly multidisciplinary, oncology professionals are looking for ways to better connect information across the care continuum. eHGT shares our commitment to providing service and technology solutions that streamline the delivery of coordinated, patient-centric care.”
In a groundbreaking study, 71 percent of newly diagnosed oncology patients were not able to schedule a first appointment, and 39 percent of those patients were denied or unable to schedule an appointment due to demand for medical records, according to research from the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania published in June 2011. eHGT addresses this problem and reduces turnaround time from several weeks to a matter of days.
Even pathology slides are delivered in days instead of weeks, making it possible for newly-diagnosed cancer patients to be seen sooner and for providing physicians the ability to discuss their patients’ treatment plan with them during their initial consultation. With eHealth Global's eHealth Access™ Record Retrieval Service, patient information can be collected and managed regardless of the source and format of the data. eHGT, is a leading medical record retrieval and diagnostic image exchange service provider, serving 50 percent of the nation's top 100 hospitals, including 13 of the top 17 hospitals selected for the prominent “Honor Roll of the Best Hospitals” from the 2011-2012 U.S. News & World Report. eHGT’s services build upon Philips’ commitment to improving coordination of information during a patient’s course of care.
“eHGT enables the secure and accurate collection and management of patient records, images and pathology slides, no matter the source or format of the data, providing better patient care while improving the efficiency of cancer centers,” said Michael Margiotta, chief executive officer, eHGT. “We share Philips’ goal of making important patient information accessible to clinicians whenever and wherever it’s needed for confident and timely decision making.”
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, cancer is now considered a chronic disease. With Philips’ growing portfolio of products, services and alliances to address broader issues in oncology, the company is truly poised to be a partner of choice in shaping the future of cancer care.