Southwestern Ontario Diagnostic Imaging Network
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Picture Archiving and Communications System (PACS)

Picture Archiving and Communications System (PACS) refers to a computer system that is used to capture, store, distribute and display medical images for interpretation or review. Electronic images and reports are transmitted digitally via PACS. A PACS consists of four major components: the imaging modalities such as CT and MRI, a secure network to transmit patient information, work stations for interpreting and reviewing images, and long- and short-term archives to store and retrieve images and reports. Combined with available and emerging web technology, PACS can deliver timely and efficient access to images, interpretations and related data. Our PACS is further strengthened by the integration with our hospital Radiology Information System (RIS), the Hospital Information System (HIS), and our Voice Recognition System.

  • There are 14 hospitals in our region that share our PACS system.
  • Radiologists, Technologists, Clinicians and Patients should be considered the core customer base of PACS.
  • Radiologists access studies from dedicated diagnostic workstations equipped with tools for manipulating images, retrieving and comparing prior studies, and rendering formal reports.
  • Technologists interact with PACS primarily as a means for quality assurance and assuring that all desired cases have reached the radiologists and the clinicians.
  • Clinicians view images and reports on Clinical stations or by Centricity Web

Introduction
A PACS allows a healthcare facility to capture, store, view and share all types of images internally and externally.  It can be used for inpatient, ambulatory, emergency and specialties, as well as integrate with other electronic systems including a hospital information system.

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