Advanced Medical Imaging Protocol Workflow—A Flexible Electronic Solution to Optimize Process Efficiency, Care Quality and Patient Safety in the National VA Enterprise
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Radiologists routinely make decisions with only limited information when assigning protocol instructions for the performance of advanced medical imaging examinations. Opportunity exists to simultaneously improve the safety, quality and efficiency of this workflow through the application of an electronic solution leveraging health system resources to provide concise, tailored information and decision support in real-time. Such a system has been developed using an open source, open standards design for use within the Veterans Health Administration. The Radiology Protocol Tool Recorder (RAPTOR) project identified key process attributes as well as inherent weaknesses of paper processes and electronic emulators of paper processes to guide the development of its optimized electronic solution. The design provides a kernel that can be expanded to create an integrated radiology environment. RAPTOR has implications relevant to the greater health care community, and serves as a case model for modernization of legacy government health information systems.