The research project stems from one of the last steps of Quebec's province-wide deployment of PACS -- for hospitals that had not already adopted the technology -- as well as three diagnostic imaging repositories. The three imaging repositories receive images from all hospitals in the jurisdiction with an overall volume of about 10 million studies a year, said presenter Alain Gauvin of McGill University Health Centre in Montreal.
All of these imaging studies are indexed in an XDS registry using the IHE XDS-I.b. profile.
"Two important components of our project were to make these studies seen and retrievable by users of PACS located within hospitals, so that they can discover and retrieve prior studies to facilitate the reading of a current study, which we call the 'prefetch' use case," Gauvin said. "Another use case was to allow clinical users of local PACS -- for instance, surgeons seeing a patient from another hospital -- to retrieve priors from other hospitals in order to help with the clinical management of the patient, and avoid repeating local exams already carried out elsewhere (the ad hoc retrieval use case)."
Many requirements must be considered, however, when "ingesting" outside studies to support these use cases, he said. Gauvin will discuss them in detail during his Wednesday afternoon presentation.
"Using XDS-I to manage the retrieval of a large number of foreign studies of various origins presents many challenges that are not necessarily described in the XDS-I IHE profile," he said. "This paper demonstrates that it is possible to tackle most of them in order to achieve a satisfying level of interoperability."