It has been asked “Why use a VNA for an intermediate archive?” This is a good question, because at first sight it would seem sensible to keep the VNA once the data is transferred to it.
There are two answers to this question:
First, procurement – our Transition Service means NHS Trusts regain local ownership of their data, moving themselves from a weak negotiating position into a strong one, thus saving money. Even if staying with the existing vendor, there are ‘migration’ costs to move data out of the DataCentre onto local storage. As committing to a VNA architecture for a long contract means going to OJEU, that decision cannot be made ahead of time. So our transition service delivers cash savings, irrespective of whether Trusts procure a new PACS or extend the existing vendor’s contract. This is further explained here.
Second, clinical usability – in order to be able to ‘switch off’ the Data Centre contract as soon as possible (and start saving money), historical data must be kept clinically usable, i.e. up to date. This is achieved through standard interfacing of demographic updates, a feature not available is the data in just a basic DICOM archive (or off-line). An outline schematic is here.
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