A PACS archive architecture supported on cloud services
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Diagnostic imaging procedures have continuously increased over the last decade and this trend may continue in coming years, creating a great impact on storage and retrieval capabilities of current PACS. Moreover, many smaller centers do not have financial resources or requirements that justify the acquisition of a traditional infrastructure. Alternative solutions, such as cloud computing, may help address this emerging need.
A tremendous amount of ubiquitous computational power, such as that provided by Google and Amazon, are used every day as a normal commodity. Taking advantage of this new paradigm, an architecture for a Cloud-based PACS archive that provides data privacy, integrity, and availability is proposed. The solution is independent from the cloud provider and the core modules were successfully instantiated in examples of two cloud computing providers. Operational metrics for several medical imaging modalities were tabulated and compared for Google Storage, Amazon S3, and LAN PACS.
A PACS-as-a-Service archive that provides storage of medical studies using the Cloud was developed. The results show that the solution is robust and that it is possible to store, query, and retrieve all desired studies in a similar way as in a local PACS approach.
Cloud computing is an emerging solution that promises high scalability of infrastructures, software, and applications, according to a “pay-as-you-go” business model. The presented architecture uses the cloud to setup medical data repositories and can have a significant impact on healthcare institutions by reducing IT infrastructures.
KeywordsMedical imaging PACS DICOM Telemedicine Cloud computing
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