Each year in Nova Scotia, more than 1.27 million patient diagnostic images, like ultra sounds, x-rays, angiograms, CT-scans, mammograms, and MRIs, are created. The province's Picture Archiving Communication System (PACS) uses digital electronics to capture, store, and share those medical images with health care workers who need the images to care for a patient.
PACS enables physicians and other health care workers to access images remotely and instantaneously, anywhere and at any time. By removing the barriers of geography and time, PACS helps physicians and other health care professionals to provide better and faster diagnoses, leading to better and faster treatment. At the same time, PACS protects all patient files in a secure environment, allowing only authorized users to see the information.
PACS makes it better for a patient to receive health care in several ways. First, it reduces patient transfers between facilities for testing. Second, it allows physicians to consult on patient cases at a distance...bridging urban and rural health care. Third, it reduces waits for test results, which may speed treatment, care or discharge.
Nova Scotia has been using PACS for storing and sharing all diagnostic images since June 2006. PACS is a fundamental piece of Nova Scotia's electronic health record, and is an important part of achieving the goal of having one health record for each patient.
Crown copyright 2011, Province of Nova Scotia, all rights reserved.
Page last updated 2011-09-06.