Healthcare informatics

What Radiologists Want Their CIOs to Know

What Radiologists Want Their CIOs to Know


COVID-19 has turned our traditional technology infrastructure on its head. The pandemic has tested technology’s limits, its ability to meet modern demands of physicians and patients, and its capability to extend and adapt when needed. With a sudden shift to remote work in order to comply with social distancing procedures to keep clinicians and patients safe from infection, COVID-19 has revealed the need for flexible technology like never before. 

At the end of the day, CIOs are responsible for transforming healthcare by deploying the right technologies at the right time. Instead of merely providing software and computer support, today’s CIO must also provide strategic business leadership and ensure the collection, maintenance, safety, and privacy of patient data. COVID-19, and its long-lasting implications for the future of work and patient care, presents an opportunity to not only reevaluate your networks and IT infrastructure, but also the ways you collaborate with individual departments to better predict and address their unique needs.

As we consider the evolving implications of a still unpredictable pandemic and begin to think about a potential reoccurrence phase, as well as a recovery phase,– siloed care and the in-hospital, brick and mortar model – is not an option. Take radiology for example. While COVID-19 has dramatically decreased the number of patients coming into the hospital for scans, radiology departments still have a critical need for IT to help support their new way of remote working. It is time we build more versatile networks – not just in terms of interoperability, but also the need for geographical versatility so radiologists can work when and where they need to. 

Specialty departments, like radiology, want to work constructively with CIOs and their teams to advance digital healthcare transformation to ultimately enable and streamline care delivery. While many components of a healthcare organization have historically operated in siloes, the ability for technology infrastructures to work across departments is critical for enterprise radiology services, upon which nearly every healthcare organization has come to depend on.

 

This requires a shift in mindset – no longer is the IT department the behind-the-scenes stage manager, but instead out in front helping to predict and plan - a true force for change and effective collaboration. With decades of advancing their own digital transformation, radiologists have the experience needed as suitable partners and resources to boost your digital strategy. Philips can help act as a facilitator during staff interactions, offering consultancy to deploy the right innovations and empowering the modern CIO to take ownership of their technology transformation with data-driven decisions. Afterall, obtaining the right answers is only part of the equation. The ability to ask the right questions is a critical first step.

Working Together to Advance Digital Strategies

 

As clinicians and patients grow in their comfort level with technology, their expectations of interconnectedness, convenience and flexibility have grown with it. As a CIO, your department needs to replicate this mindset shift to better inform your digital strategy. At Philips, we regularly talk with radiologists to understand their challenges with current technology infrastructures. We can help you and your IT department not only reevaluate your technology needs, but also ensure you effectively communicate with the radiology department and that your tactics address the priorities that will have the greatest patient and staff impact. A great common ground for radiology and IT departments is workflow enhancements. Philips can help scope workflow obstacles and determine how to overcome them, engage in meaningful dialogues with care and IT teams, and define and deploy solutions to help improve operational efficiency and resource optimization, with real-time data analytics to support productivity and performance tracking. 

 

One common pitfall is adopting innovation for technology’s sake only. Integrating cutting-edge technology needs to be done thoughtfully and with scalability and sustainability in mind – for example, while advanced CT, MR or Ultrasound technologies are appealing, especially in terms of image acquisition and confident diagnoses, they generate more data that needs to be managed and stored. Can your internet bandwidth, storage and overall infrastructure support this volume, or are there root issues that need to be addressed first? Again, the right questions are as important as getting to the right answers. At Philips, we can help you develop a plan to adopt the latest innovation that aligns with your current infrastructure so to not lead to further inefficiencies. 

 

As CIO, no one knows technology better than you and your team. If COVID-19 has taught us anything, it is that no one team can address the deep-rooted IT challenges and meet the needs of all clinicians alone. It is time to allow more voices to enter the conversation, working together for a stronger digital future.