posted on Wednesday, November 24, 2004 - 10:41 am
IHE and end-users IHE is a global initiative. It is about 1.seamless information flow in a multi-vendor environment 2.Integration using vendor neutral interfaces (avoiding the need for expensive specific vendor based interfaces in future.) 3.guaranteed integration 4.future-proofing of investment on equipment/RIS/PACS 5.Improve efficiency and effectiveness of clinical practice
Why do we need IHE? One does not need IHE if a single vendor was to supply PAS, PACS, RIS, All Modalities (CR/DR, CT, MRI, NM, US etc). However, even in the NPFIT monopoly environment, one does have to work with multiple vendors. Hence, even with NPFIT we need to have IHE. (In addition multi-vendor environment working does bring in healthy competition and R&D). You can get all of this without IHE by specifying clearly at each step what your integration need as an end-user is and these integrations/interfaces can be promised. However, vendors will only work on these interfaces once the contract is signed. However, once contract is signed there is no guarantee when or if this integration will happen (vendors could blame one another for lack of integration). These vendor specific integrations will be expensive in the long run. With IHE you are guaranteed this integration before you buy a system.
However, to get what you need in IHE, one needs to be clear on what profiles and what actors you need supported by each individual piece of equipment/system. It is no good saying we need IHE. Many of the profiles may not be relevant to us. Today it is impossible to find a single vendor who conforms to all IHE profiles and all actors. Many of the profile with actors may not be relevant to different systems/equipment.
In the PACS OBS vendors are only asked to produce IHE conformance statements. But they are not forced to comply. I have asked someone involved in writing of the PACS OBS- why in the OBS it was not clearly stated what actors and what Profiles are expected. I am told it is too late now. Contracts were being signed based on the OBS. The OBS is already 15 months old (contracts are not yet signed). By the time some of us get to NPFIT PACS implementation we may have an OBS which is 5-7 years old. Would any of us specify and pay for a PC for home use to be delivered 5-7 years later? That says it all I think. I was told that we could specify IHE as a local requirement. But then if the NPFIT PACS/RIS vendor does not comply with the Profiles/actors required then we donít have any other choice anyway (NPFIT PACS or no PACS as PACS is core).
I have put together some Local IHE requirements in a tabular form, specifying each component of PACS with the the relevant actors and profiles. I have been unable to upload this word document onto the web-site. I have sent this document to our RID.
posted on Wednesday, November 24, 2004 - 03:01 pm
Hi i found your article very interesting.Could you please email me the document you mentioned on the group site . You may email it at firstname.lastname@example.org .Alternatively you may call me at 07879471561.
Your comments regarding IHE were very succinct, timely and valuable. I would appreciate a copy of your document if you could mail to me at email@example.com.
posted on Wednesday, November 24, 2004 - 10:06 pm
Will try to upload the document again. Please remember that this does not include all profiles and all actors. This has been drawn up by me for our local requirements. However, I hope this forum will help to highlight other actors/profiles that may be suitable to others.