VISIT TO THE DIGITAL RADIOLOGY CENTRE AT HYDERABAD, ANDHRA PRADESH
29-06-2007 : Hyderabad, Andhra Pradesh
Digital-radiology: A New Dimension to Medicare
"Technology outreach vital for rural Transformation"
I am delighted to visit the Digital Radiology Centre at ECIL, Hyderabad which is working towards providing low cost digital radiography equipment, electronic medical records systems with tele-radiology facility in partnership with Mr. Madhu Reddy of US Electronics.
Tele-radiology as I understand is a means of electronically transmitting radiographic images of the patient and consultative text from one location to another through digital, computer-assisted transmission. Within a large hospital, tele-radiology can be used to send images from one department to another, particularly for emergency treatment of patients in intensive care units. Transmission of data in DICOM Compatible form is an essential requirement for tele-radiology.
While most tele-radiology systems installed in the country, over the last decade were intended for on-call purposes, the past two years have seen a rapid increase in the use of tele-radiology to link hospitals and affiliated satellite facilities, other primary hospitals, and imaging centers. This has been possible due to the maturing of a number of enabling technologies such as high-band width telecommunications networks, improved data compression techniques, quality standards and reduction in cost.
Reach the unreached
I understand that the country at present has only less than 6000 radiologists. The introduction of tele-radiology will not only enable efficient utilization of this scarce expertise but also enable training and continuing education of radiologists throughout the country. This can significantly improve access to imaging experts for needy patients living in remote or rural areas and also enable world-wide consultation of complex medical conditions.
Radiology Equipment Technology
The inherent benefit of digital imaging as a diagnostic tool and the tele-radiology should be taken as an opportunity for reaching the unreached in a cost effective manner. This brings out the importance of ECIL gearing up for designing and manufacturing high resolution monitors which are essentially involved in practicing tele-radiology. With the population of one billion, the number of equipment needed will be so large, the cost must come down drastically. Simultaneously, while we consider the saving due to the consumable in films and other forms the life time cost will make digital radiology viable.
In conclusion, tele-radiology opens up new opportunities for providing quality health care to the people in the remotest areas and development of skill in the country. It will also give a great boost to manufacture of indigenous DICOM compatible equipment. The availability of tele-radiology in hospitals enables easy data storage and retrieval of patients? history and use of this history as valuable diagnostic tool to deal with the current medical situation. I would recommend ECIL to become a tele-radiology solution provider to the healthcare industry aim for entire South East Asia market.
My best wishes to all the members of this Digital Radiology Centre for success in their mission in providing a total tele-radiology solution for the community.
May God bless you.
Dr. A. P. J. Abdul Kalam