Radiology Information System (RIS) purchases have often taken a back seat to EMR and PACS decisions. However, new products entering the RIS market and vendors expanding their EMR and PACS client bases with integrated solutions suggest that radiology information systems are taking a renewed priority in purchasing decisions and being included in discussions surrounding meaningful use's electronic information exchange requirements, according to a recent report from Orem, Utah-based KLAS.
RIS decisions are being pulled in three different directions depending on the facility's priorities: an integrated RIS/EMR strategy where data is housed on a common clinical platform, an integrated RIS/PACS for the imaging department, or a feature rich standalone RIS solution capable of being implemented and interfaced within the existing environment.
Some in radiology believe that an integrated RIS/PACS setup is a silver bullet, marrying integration with end-user functionality. On the other hand, IT administrators push for RIS/EMR solutions in order to build a patient-centric workflow across the organization. Both strategies have pros and cons, and both must still have an interface-either the RIS/PACS to the EMR or the RIS/EMR to the PACS.
Sixty-three percent of respondents indicate their RIS has necessary functionality currently, but providers list four key functionality items on their RIS wish list. Included on that list are management reporting tools, flexible scheduling, rollout of promised mammography tools and critical test results management (CTRM) functionality.
Among the twenty-three RIS solutions tracked in the KLAS report, Epic Radiant ranked number one for large hospitals (200+ beds) with an overall performance score of 82.0 out of 100. Siemens syngo Workflow and McKesson Radiology Manager ranked second and third, respectively. Avreo interWORKS and NovaRad NovaRIS tied for the highest score (83.3) in the community hospital market segment with GE Centricity RIS-IC taking the third highest ranked position. FUJIFILM Synapse Information System was the highest ranked ambulatory RIS system with an overall score of 87.8, followed by Swearingen Software RISynergy in second place and MedInformatix RIS in third.