In 1967 ‘Stichting Kankerbestrijding der Samenwerkende Ziekenhuizen in Arnhem en omgeving’ was founded. Since 1991 the name has been changed to: Arnhems Radiotherapeutic Institute’, or ARTI. In addition to providing the best possible radiotherapeutic care for patients, the Radiotherapy Group, as an independent oncological centre, conducts research into radiotherapy. From 1 January 2013, the ARTI, together with the Radiotherapeutic Institute Stedendriehoek en Omstreken (RISO), will form the Radiotherapy Group. In order to excel in healthcare, a switch to a fully accessible, digital system was inevitable. The Radiotherapy Group has made a well-considered choice for Archive-IT.
Own scanning line or outsourcing?
Maurits Hesselmans (Care Manager): “Thoughts about digitising our paper archive had been going on for some time, so when we came into contact with Archive-IT office retailer Wink in February 2012, the plans soon became concrete. We started in June 2012 and the project took about three months. We have digitized 10,000 paper files. We considered using our own scanning line, but it soon became clear that this would take too long and would be very inefficient. We thought it was very important that the professionalism was high and that the desired speed of the project could be achieved. Later on, we also reviewed the software for access to our digitized archive and switched to JIM. The doctors work with Medfolio (Nexus), with which a link is made to JIM to have full insight into the digitized paper file. This creates a total file, new and old combined.”
Digital working in practice
Marcel Stam (Medical Specialist – Radiotherapist): “During a treatment interview you go through different phases with the patient. I always have the EPD open to me. With the link to Archive-IT, information is complete and accessible with a single click. Patients are referred to us via various hospitals, giving us access to most of the EPDs of the surrounding hospitals. With the Virtual Printer Driver we have taken screenshots to collect all important information in our own system. It can happen that sometimes a diagnosis is made in hospital A, the irradiation takes place in the Radiotherapy group and the operation in hospital B. With the Virtual Printer Driver we now have all the information together in our own EPD. Of course, it would be great if, in the future, it were possible to achieve a central status in which every attending physician could work.”
According to Paul Nilissen (Software Developer / System Administrator), the initial goal was to achieve the transition from paper to digital with the help of Archive-IT. However, the software worked so well that they went one step further and created an integration with their EPD via a link with JIM.
Marion Diepenbroek (Administrative Patient Bureau employee) will talk about the transition. “A number of employees were asked as key users and followed a training course to get to know the Archive-IT software optimally and to use it for our organization. They then passed on this knowledge to the rest of the employees. The advantages of such a system are enormous. Looking for the right information is a thing of the past. It’s just there. In the past, we often spent a very long time trying to find everything together.”
Eline Scholten (Doctor’s assistant) confirms this, because she was part of the project group, she experienced the process in detail. Hours of searching in the paper archive is no longer necessary. The time saved can be spent on primary tasks.
Searching is in the past
“Actually, the method has hardly changed. Where before you had to write and browse, you now have to retrieve the file and click on fields. As I said before, it is no longer necessary to search for the right information, everything is always accessible and complete. This accessibility offers many advantages. When a file is needed both by the doctor and by us, we no longer have to agree who puts the file where and at what time. In this way, you prevent errors and thus also guarantee the safety of patient information.”
In recent years, the Radiotherapy Group has made great strides towards digital working. They are now in a hybrid situation where not everything is digital yet. In the second phase of the transition, the organisation will switch to a total digital working environment.