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Study Finds PACS Adoption Slower Among Outpatient Facilities But Poised for Growth

Chicago, IL (PRWEB) December 1, 2008

Despite the fact that outpatient facilities are now the preferred place for all types of imaging procedures, the adoption of picture archiving and communication systems (PACS) at imaging centers, orthopedic clinics and physician groups lags behind the technology's implementation at inpatient facilities. However, interest in the space from a large and growing field of software vendors leaves the ambulatory PACS market poised for growth.

PACS solutions at outpatient clinics is the subject of a new report published this week by the research firm KLAS. The report, which profiles the performance of more than a dozen software vendors offering solutions in the space, highlights how PACS functionality is becoming an essential competitive requirement for even the smallest organization with imaging needs. Yet despite overall positive performance by the majority of vendors, many outpatient facilities have yet to invest in imaging automation.

Among other findings, the report points out that only 20 percent of orthopedic organizations are estimated to have adopted PACS. Still others have been slow to adopt the technology because of declining economic conditions and the impact of legislation like the Deficit Reduction Act, which reduced spending for Medicare and Medicaid.

PACS software vendors, however, have begun to aggressively target the ambulatory market as a key arena for growth. "The entry of so many vendors into this space -- one of the most crowded of any market KLAS tracks -- illustrates the opportunity vendors see targeting outpatient facilities," said report author and KLAS research director Ben Brown.

"Typically these vendors focus on one of three areas: low-cost solutions for first-time adopters, enterprise vendors targeting large imaging centers and solutions that provide unique functionality for specialty groups like mammography viewing," he added. "KLAS' Ambulatory PACS report tracks and compares all of these vendors across their areas of specialization to help providers get a clear snapshot of their choices."

In evaluating 17 ambulatory PACS vendors, the KLAS report found that the Intelerad IntelePACS product received the highest performance score (91.9 out of 100) based on feedback from current customers. Other top products included RamSoft PowerServer PACS (88.7), DR Systems Unity (87.5) and GE Centricity IW (87.2). It should be noted, however, that most of the vendors in this study received a higher performance score than the KLAS healthcare software average of 79.7 out of 100, following the trend of historically high performance for most vendors in the PACS market segment.

To learn more about the ambulatory PACS market, as well as the strengths and weaknesses of participating vendors, the "Ambulatory PACS" report is available to healthcare providers online for a significant discount off the standard retail price. To purchase the full report, healthcare providers and vendors can visit http://www.klasresearch.com.

About KLAS:

KLAS is a research firm specializing in monitoring and reporting the performance of healthcare vendors. KLAS' mission is to improve delivery, by independently measuring vendor performance for the benefit of our healthcare provider partners, consultants, investors, and vendors. Working together with executives from over 4500 hospitals and over 2500 clinics, KLAS delivers timely reports, trends, and statistics, which provide a solid overview of vendor performance in the industry. KLAS measures performance of software, professional services, and medical equipment vendors. For more information, go to http://www.KLASresearch.com, email marketing@KLASresearch.com, or call 1-800-920-4109 to speak with a KLAS representative.

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