2015 Volume 18 Issue 1 Pages 24-33
Introduction : In the cooperation of a regional medical network, it is an important issue in interinstitutional patient referrals to transfer and share imaging information among institutions. Medical imaging histories of patients have been increasing important in modern medicine. The important task has been facilitated with spread of digital imaging in medical institutions. However, classical analogue images are still commonly utilized. Purpose : The purpose of this work is to know the recent trend of transition from analogue to digital imaging in medical institutions the majority of which are located in the southeast district in Tokyo.Material and Method : We looked into how many medical images, both X-ray films and digital formats (Portable Data for Imaging : PDI), were transferred in patient referrals to Tokyo Metropolitan Bokuto Hospital from January 2008 to February 2011, and also estimated a percentage of PDI. Results : The transferred medical images dramatically increased in the late 2000s : 322 in 2008, 1568 in 2009 and 2256 in 2010. The percentage of PDI was 17.7% in 2008, 35.7% in 2009, and 49.6% in 2010. Hospitals provided PDI more frequently than clinics : 23.8% vs. 10.7% in 2008, 47.0% vs. 24.9% in 2009, and 60.7 vs. 39.1% in 2010. Large hospitals with over 500 beds most often supplied PDI. Conclusion : The results reflected that digital imaging systems have been increasingly prevalent in referral hospitals, while it is still limited in use in clinics. Utility of PDI is apparent in sharing and transfer of medical imaging, and the standardization is essential for the optimal use. The utilization of PDI should be geared, as digital imaging systems is widespread in primary medical care services.