November 12, 2019 --
The group from Jefferson Health in Philadelphia initially began offering clinical 3D printing services as part of small proof-of-concept studies and research projects. Increasing demand for their services over time motivated the group to expand their 3D printing program to their entire health network and also to streamline all relevant services.
In collaboration with radiologists, computer engineers, designers, and hospital administrators, the researchers developed an entirely in-house 3D printing service, eliminating the need to outsource any step in the process of creating patient-specific 3D-printed models.
Software engineers developed an interface within the hospital's electronic medical record (EMR) system that allows clinicians to order 3D-printed models directly and track the models' progress, as well as record patient outcomes. The researchers also assigned clinicians, designers, and students with expertise in 3D modeling and printing to perform the image segmentation, volume rendering, and 3D printing at the health network's 3D printing lab.
"Having an in-house 3D printing service promotes interdepartmental collaboration, helps retain and build organizational resources, and, most importantly, contributes to the quality of patient care," Robert Pugliese, PharmD, told AuntMinnie.com. "Patients are better informed about their procedures, spend less time in the operating room, and heal with fewer complications."