This article, submitted by Jon Mertz, won second place in the Professional category of the 2006 RT ImageWriter’s Competition.

Schools around the country host Red Ribbon Week, which encourages kids to remain drug-free. During the week, the kids are encouraged to participate in creative activities to get them to think about the choices they make. One of the days is spent wearing their clothes inside out, signifying living healthy from the inside out. Simple activities drive the vital message.

Imagine a day at an imaging center where all radiologists, technologists, PACSPicture Archiving Communication Systems (PACS) are devoted to the storage, retrieval, distribution, ... More administrators, etc. wear their clothes inside out to signify their focus on patients and referring physicians. Would this spark more creative thinking about how to change processes and technologies to better support their community? Would it drive home the point that customer focus comes from the outside in?

Diagnostic imaging practices have literally purchased tons of technology to support their important work; however, is the primary focus on the internal operations or the external interactions? By focusing on external interactions, imaging centers can map technology and processes to ensure proper alignment with delivering quality care to their patients and building stronger relationships with physicians. The following two questions illustrate this approach:

  1. What is the best method to accept orders and deliver patient reports from the referring community?
  2. What are the underlying technology requirements to support delivering higher quality care to patients?

Answering each question from the outside in may change the way technology and processes are implemented.

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