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Monmouth Medical Center Introduces Cutting-Edge Technology to Provide Patient Access to Medical Images

Monmouth Medical Center, a Barnabas Health facility, was recently chosen as the only hospital in New Jersey – and one of just 13 hospitals in the nation – to participate in the Radiologic Society of North America Image Share Network (RSNA ISN).

Funded by the National Institute for Biomedical Imaging and Bioengineering (NIBIB), the Image Share Network is a web-based network providing patients access to their medical images and reports while also allowing them to maintain their information using online personal health record (PHR) accounts.

“Using CDs to give patients copies of the medical images and reports can be a cumbersome and frustrating process for radiology staff and patients alike,” said Richard Ruchman, M.D., chairman of Radiology, Monmouth Medical Center. “Image Share lets patients use secure Internet technology to give them control over their records at no cost. Now, Monmouth Medical Center patients have the unique ability to send images and reports to any doctor, anywhere in the world.”

Participating sites utilize cutting-edge technology that connects local radiology systems to the network infrastructure. A device called the Edge Server enables Monmouth Medical Center to provide unique security keys to patients by gathering images and reports and placing them in secure digital packages. The network features security encryption similar to those used for online banking, allowing patients to retain secure access once they create their PHR and share information with care providers when needed.

“All personal information is protected by encryption as it moves through the network, and it can only be accessed by using a secure code and password known only to the patient,” said Dr. Ruchman. “Additionally, patients must also sign informed consent paperwork, just as they would when taking possession of imaging studies or any other medical information.”

Once a patient is enrolled in the network, he or she will receive a secure password that allows access to personal radiologic images and reports within 72 hours of having tests completed in Monmouth Medical Center’s radiology department.

All imaging studies performed in the Monmouth Medical Center radiology department, including x-ray, computed tomography (CT), magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), angiogram, nuclear imaging and bone densitometry scans, are available via the Image Share Network.

In 2012, the RSNA ISN was launched through a $4.7 million NIBIB contract to build a secure, patient-centric medical image sharing network based on common open-standards architecture.

The RSNA was charged with developing a system to enable patients to share images with physicians free of the limitations of CDs. Patient participation is voluntary and participating clinicians are spreading the word to their patients.

To learn more about the RSNA Image Share Network or the Radiology Department at Monmouth Medical Center, call 732-923-6800 or visit www.barnabashealth.org.

About Monmouth Medical Center

Located in Long Branch, N.J., Monmouth Medical Center, a Barnabas Health facility, along with The Children’s Hospital at Monmouth Medical Center, is one of New Jersey's largest academic medical centers and has been a teaching affiliate of Philadelphia’s Drexel University College of Medicine for more than 40 years. From its earliest days, Monmouth Medical Center has been a leader in surgical advancement and has introduced many technological firsts to the region, including robotic surgery and other minimally invasive techniques. The hospital is routinely recognized by HealthGrades, the nation’s largest premier independent health care quality company, for excellence in both emergency medicine and maternity care. U.S. News & World Report has recognized Monmouth as a regional leader in cancer, geriatrics, gynecology, neurology and neurosurgery. For more information on Monmouth Medical Center, visit www.barnabashealth.org.

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