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Primary Functions

Clinical Image Display

VI Display of digital photograph - click to view
VI Display of digital photograph

At VistA Imaging sites, workstations are generally located in clinic exam rooms, Wards, and clinician's private offices. Clinicians often review images, such as signed consent forms, advance directives, and digital photographs when placing orders or writing progress notes using the RPMS EHR.

Image Capture

Images may be captured in several ways:

  • Using an image capture workstation with an input device such as a video camera, still digital camera, scanner, or a source of image files on its hard drive
  • Using an automated interface such as a Digital Imaging and Communications in Medicine (DICOM) standard gateway

Filmless Radiology

The VistARad diagnostic workstation allows radiologists to interpret radiology exams without printing film, providing a number of important features including:

  • Customizable hanging protocols for optimized presentation of current and prior exams
  • A "ReadList" function for automating reading session workflow
  • Integration with voice dictation systems
  • Radiology department workflow management to eliminate double-reads

Image Management

The VistA Imaging System includes a "core infrastructure" consisting of the following hardware components. These components provide short- and long-term storage and management of all images associated with a patient's medical record.

  • Network servers, including magnetic and optical disk jukeboxes, for storage of images
  • Network infrastructure including switches and cabling for communication of images
  • DICOM gateway systems to communicate with commercial Picture Archiving and Communication Systems (PACS) and modalities such as CT, MR, and Computed Radiography (x-ray) devices for image capture
  • A background processor that is responsible for moving the images to the proper storage device and for managing storage space