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The fact that the data transfer took only about eight months is due to a num­ ber of factors, including the optimized management of the migration pro­ cess. Those responsible for the project pinpointed a transfer speed that allowed radiologists to do their work without issues during the migration, while still keeping the preliminary studies gene­ rated earlier available for comparison purposes without long wait times. During the migration process, Sie­ mens maintained its own office within the radiology institute to monitor the data transfer and remain available to PACS users at all times. “We always have an expert contact person nearby to help us right away with all our technical questions and issues relating to using the system,” says Klein, praising the support provided for the project. For Physicians, Not Engineers So what’s the final verdict on syngo. plaza? Beissert pauses, then answers: “We are focusing less on the technology and more on the benefits that the tech­ nology brings us for our reporting. That means syngo.plaza has taken our radi­ ology department into the future.” The new PACS is a tool that allows radiolo­ gists once again to concentrate more on the original purpose of the profession in their day­to­day practice: That is actually the best compliment syngo.plaza could hope to earn. After all, it was developed for physicians – not for engineers. Switching to the Next View in Seconds1 Another example is the Cross Reference mode, which is used for reporting CT or MRI studies. The radiologist marks a certain spatial point within a series and can then automatically locate that point in a different view. Detlef Klein, MD, senior physician in the hospital’s radiol­ ogy department cites a real­world exam­ ple to explain the benefits of this pro­ cess: “Using the Cross Reference tool, I can switch perspectives in seconds1 to find out whether an air pocket is located within the intestine or is extraluminal.” In principle, the site’s former PACS also offered the ability to call up multiple or­ thogonal views, of course. “But it is sig­ nificantly faster now, with just one click from the mouse menu,” Klein says. Indeed, time savings and speed are what the switch is all about. Download­ ing a polytrauma case with 1,600 images now takes just a few seconds1 at most, where the radiology team in Würzburg used to wait several minutes for the same process to finish in the past. Speed also affects communication within the team, as Hahn points out: “It used to take a minute and a half to load an MRI or CT series. That was unbearably long for clini­ cal demonstrations or tumor conferences. With syngo.plaza, the images now appear onscreen right away.” Since these kinds of conferences often involve discussing images from twenty or more patients, in­ cluding preliminary scans, it is easy to see how much time the new PACS saves. Individual series now load in three to four seconds1 since they are no longer transferred to the interpretation console locally, and are available on the hospital’s network. In this context, Hahn lays out a simple calculation: “If it took a minute and a half to call up a study using the old PACS, and we open 400 studies per day, we can see, in purely arithmetic terms, that syngo.plaza will now help save us several hours of loading time – time that we can better use elsewhere. The image memory is large enough that we can even access the images for multiple patients at the same time.” On the topic of work speed and wait­ ing times, Professor Matthias Beissert, MD, managing physician at the Insti­ tute of Radiology, can’t resist a slight dig at Siemens: “We had to wait a bit longer than we had originally expected for syngo.plaza,” he notes. Develop­ ing an advanced PACS simply takes time. “And a new PACS from Siemens is no exception,” he says. But jokes and critical comments aside, Beissert does ultimately have praise for Siemens as a longstanding, valued partner: “The wait was worthwhile – well worthwhile, even.” One factor in his positive overall assessment of syngo.plaza is the Smart Select function, a personalized tool that each radiologist can arrange according to his or her routines. The radiologist selects the eight most frequently used functions and places them in the “star”, where they can then be clicked directly, instead of having to use the navigation bars for access. This helps ensure that users move forward quickly, with just a few clicks, saving “mouse meters” and allowing the radiologist to concentrate completely on the image. Data Sets from 1.2 Million Scans Migrated to New PACS The facility in Würzburg decided on “everything in a single archive” as a solution. All of the existing data from ten years of digital radiology – 1.2 mil­ lion scans, totaling 50 terabytes in all – was transferred to the new system. The department’s former PACS, SIENET Magic, has definitely been put out of commission now that the data migra­ tion is complete, and the radiologists are working exclusively with syngo.plaza. 1 Results may vary. Data on file. “The idle times we experienced during tumor conferences while we waited for the images is now – finally – a thing of the past for us.” Prof. Matthias Beissert, MD, Managing Physician at the Institute of Radiology “The support we received from Siemens during the migration was everything we could have hoped for.” Detlef Klein, MD, Senior Physician at the Institute of Radiology at the University Hospital of Würzburg ITSystemsRAD·BOOK 2012 51