Radiology services across Yorkshire and the Humber are to be transformed by new technology from Agfa HealthCare, which will allow organisations to view patient images and reports across seven NHS hospital trusts, as well as the newly-established NHS Nightingale Hospital Yorkshire and the Humber.
With demand on departments only increasing in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the new technology - the Xero Exchange Network - enables the connected hospitals, which collectively cover a patient population of over three million, to diagnose patients who are transferred between sites at a much quicker rate than was previously possible.
Patients will also benefit from the Xero Exchange Network as, in some cases, it will reduce the number of scans a patient needs, lowering the amount of radiation they receive, as well as the number of visits the patient needs to make to hospital.
The Yorkshire Imaging Collaborative (YIC), the official name of the hospital trusts working together to improve radiology services, has accelerated the implementation of this new software to support hospitals during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The following trusts will benefit from this new technology:
- Airedale NHS Foundation Trust
- Bradford Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust
- Calderdale and Huddersfield NHS Foundation Trust
- Harrogate and District NHS Foundation Trust
- Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust
- Mid Yorkshire Hospitals NHS Trust
- Northern Lincolnshire and Goole NHS Foundation Trust
- NHS Nightingale Hospital Yorkshire and the Humber
Hull University Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust will be connected at a later date.
YIC is part of the West Yorkshire Association of Acute Trusts (WYAAT), a collaboration of hospitals working together to improve services for patients and staff.
Clinical lead for the Yorkshire Imaging Collaborative, Daniel Fascia, said: “This new technology will transform the way hospitals deliver radiology services to patients for the better.
“Not only will the image sharing software reduce the time patients spend in hospital, but it will allow for a quicker diagnosis and relieve pressures on radiology services across the region during this period of increased demand.”
Adrian Watts, imaging informatics programme manager at Agfa HealthCare, added: “One of our fundamental goals working with the YIC has always been to make all images and reports available to authorised users across the collaborative.
“We accelerated this work following the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic and rapid opening of the NHS Nightingale Yorkshire and the Humber Hospital, completing it in a very-short timescale.”