In fact, they had too many choices. Whether the job at hand involved viewing, storing, retrieving or reporting—or all of the above—the physicians had to navigate data siloes that had sprung up and proliferated across several cardiology practices serving the Southeast U.S. through the 15-hospital health system.
That was then and this is now. As Novant Health’s Manager of Enterprise Imaging, Ervin today oversees the “EI” arena for radiology as well as cardiology. His job title offers a clue as to what changed in Novant Health’s cardiology operations as of last autumn.
“The big draw for accepting the upgrade from a CVIS to Enterprise Imaging was the chance to upfit Novant with a consolidated database for all cardiology images,” Ervin recalls. “Today we still have five different systems from multiple vendors within our cardiology environment, but the new EI capabilities will let us consolidate all those down to one.”
Along with consolidate, the other operative word might be upgrade. Novant didn’t grapple with which vendor would supply its cardiological Enterprise Imaging solution. Agfa HealthCare’s systems and people had been pleasing Novant physicians and staff since the turn of the 21st century, Erving says. And among the company’s well-loved technologies was that aging CVIS. For this reason, he points out, buy-in on the upgrade to EI was both instant and unanimous. And the upgrade path was clear and well laid out.
“We’ll soon be able to have cardiac cath, echocardiography, vascular ultrasound, and some nuclear medicine all in one database,” he says. “Our cardiologists will have up-to-date technology that lets them see all the images they need to see in, effectively, a single step. They won’t have to deal with imaging data siloes anymore.”
Having completed the initial leap from conventional CVIS and cardiology PACS to Agfa HealthCare Enterprise Imaging for Cardiology, Ervin recognizes that he learned a lot along the way. In a recent Zoom interview with Cardiovascular Business, he shared observations that may be instructive for any hospital-based imaging team mulling a move toward modernization via enterprise imaging.