Picture Archiving and Communication System (PACS) is a medical imaging technology used for storing, retrieving, sharing and presenting images produced by various medical devices, such as ultrasound, CT scan, X-ray, and MRI machines. The technology have been majorly used in healthcare systems and in hospitals. These are usually related to radiology departments that produces large number of medical images. PACS technologies also include images produced by other departments, such as dermatology, oncology, pathology and cardiology. In addition to sharing images within health systems and hospitals, the technology can combine with ambulatory clinics and with external health systems.
Healthcare enterprises require a PACS infrastructure that allow to view a multi-site, multi-system environment combined, and manages the complete reporting and imaging lifecycle on disparate radiology solutions. Sharing patient images and information through a common global work list will deliver a workflow that balances reading and reporting among available radiologists throughout the enterprise. PACS architecture eliminates the obstructions often caused due to different physical locations and users and variations in network speed and reliability. Users gain substantive improvements in radiologist productivity, workload balancing, report timeliness and overall resource use.
The global picture archiving and communication system (PACS) market size was valued at US$ 1,712.1 million in 2017 and is expected to witness a robust CAGR of 5.5% over the forecast period (2018–2026).
Growing healthcare IT adoption coupled with increasing demand for diagnostic imaging are expected to drive global picture archiving and communication system market revenue growth over the forecast period. For instance, according to a survey from Healthcare’s Digital Future, in 2014, over 70% patients aged above 50 years demanded for digital healthcare services. Demand for diagnostic medical imaging in a large integrated health system is growing at a faster pace due to rising popularity among patients and physicians. Furthermore, increased demand for universalization of medical image archiving and storage of all formats of medical data is expected to fuel PACS market growth during the forecast timeframe.
Adoption of Electronic Medical Records (EMR)/Electronic Health Record (EHR) systems has increased globally. Majority of EMR/EHR systems have trouble supporting imaging information, which represents a significant amount of a patient’s medical record. PACS solutions support an easy, open and unified interface for transferring imaging studies to EMR/EHR systems, so that clinicians gain a complete view of a patient’s history and current condition. This will lead to a higher level of patient care with more accurate diagnosis and treatment.
Various government initiatives, across the globe support healthcare IT adoption due to enormous benefits and importance. Adoption of connected healthcare solutions, like PACS, RIS, PHR and EHR have grown with the surge in requirements to improve the overall quality of healthcare services. The push to increase adoption through regulatory requirements in the Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health (HITECH) Act (2009) has raised physicians’ levels of awareness about electronic health records (EHRs). Efficient and flexible PACS solutions can play an important role as healthcare institutions struggle to handle an accelerating demand for imaging services while simultaneously containing costs and ensuring a high level of care. PACS solutions need to deliver a comprehensive suite of embedded clinical tools, share a common workflow among disparate systems, embrace thin-client and mobile environments, seamlessly integrate with EMR/EHRs and health information exchanges, and offer flexible business models.
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Key players in the Picture Archiving and Communication System market include Agfa-Gevaert Group, Carestream Health, FUJIFILM Medical Systems, INFINITT Healthcare Co. Ltd., GE Healthcare, Koninklijke Philips N.V., Merge Healthcare Solutions Inc., Mckesson Corp., Sectra AB and Siemens Healthineers.