Spokane Journal of Business

Joint venture sells software for radiology

Inland Imaging-Providence's RadWorkFlow lets doctors read exams more efficiently

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A joint venture between Inland Imaging and Providence Health Care has sold to a San Francisco company the intellectual property and marketing rights to a radiology-practice work-flow system it developed.

The San Francisco company, Medicalis, will combine the software with its own decision-support system, which helps attending physicians determine what radiological exam to order for a patient based on the answers to a set of questions, says Jon Copeland, CEO of Inland Imaging Business & Technology, a division of Inland Imaging. The combined product will help radiologists operate in situations in which hospitals or clinics have information-technology systems from numerous vendors, Inland Imaging says.

RadWorkFlow, the software developed here by RWF LLC, the joint venture of Inland Imaging and Providence Health Care, enables radiologists to log in just one time to gain access to different systems that have electronic radiology images, says Copeland. That can help save time because the sign-in process for such systems typically is complex and time-consuming.

Also, clinics often have their own information-technology systems, and RadWorkFlow "sits on top of that," allowing efficient navigation through those systems, he says.

The software also lets radiologists dictate comments on the results of their exams, which can eliminate the need for transcription of their notes dictated separately and save a lot of time, Copeland says.

RadWorkFlow does many other things besides helping radiologists to move between systems, Inland Imaging says. It says the software helps them order radiological studies and set up work flow in orderly queues. Copeland says that can be valuable in assigning responsibility to read studies in a practice that has doctors in multiple locations, as Inland does with radiologists in Spokane, Seattle, and Phoenix. It also lets radiology operations consolidate patient and exam information from different systems, capture and track data, improve billing and operational savings, and simplify the work environment. In addition, it helps radiologists to get studies back to attending physicians sometimes in three or four hours when it once took three or four days.

Finally, it can help hospitals to achieve accreditation compliance by providing reports on results. For example, Copeland says, Providence Sacred Heart Medical Center & Children's Hospital is certified as a stroke center, and having RadWorkFlow enables a report to be pulled quickly if an accreditation agency wants documentation of the time in which stroke cases have been handled.

Medicalis has hired one of Inland Imaging's three software engineers, who will move to Waterloo, Ontario, to work on continued development of the program, and Inland Imaging's other two software engineers will become Medicalis employees over time, Copeland says.

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