Q&A: The importance of faster and smoother image processing for complex cardiac cases with Dr. Poon.

September 24, 2018

Dr. Michael Poon, Chief of Non-Invasive Cardiac Imaging at Lenox Hill Hospital knows TeraRecon as well as the TeraRecon team itself. Dr. Poon has used our iNtuition solutions for over 15 years and has helped  develop new capabilities that will continue to improve his organization’s ability to analyze cases and plan procedures more quickly. Dr. Poon spoke with TeraRecon about how he uses our iNtuition suite, how the solution has evolved over the past 15 years, and how he sees the industry changing in the future. The full conversation can be read below:

 

 

WHAT PROMPTED YOU TO SEEK A SOLUTION FROM TERARECON?

I started the field of Cardiac CT many, many years ago, more than 15 years ago.  I was looking for a software system that would allow me to easily manipulate cardiac CT images. I was looking around, shopping around, and when I saw the TeraRecon system, I immediately felt that that is the right system for me because of the ease of use. Also, it helped that at that time I was a beginner and I could really appreciate the technology and how useful it is for the assessment of the coronary CTA.

WHAT MADE YOU BELIEVE THAT TERARECON WAS THE BEST FIT FOR YOUR ORGANIZATION AND HAS IMPLEMENTING TERARECON ACHIEVED THE DESIRED RESULT THAT YOU SET OUT FOR?

At Northwell we are a very large health system, we have close to 22 hospitals spread out throughout Long Island and New York City. It is very important for us to have a system that we can look at data far away and able to communicate, as well as be able to pull and push data from anywhere within our health system. TeraRecon has a very robust cloud-based software that allows us to access data from anywhere within our health system. That is really a perfect solution for us.

HAVE YOU BENEFITED FROM WORKING WITH TERARECON?

Yes, I think TeraRecon has helped me to save a lot of time. I have used other software systems to try to do the same kind of work that I do every day. My volumes have been increasing, especially since I joined Northwell. We have such a large health system; the volume went up astronomically over the past year. I need a system that really can help me to process the data quickly and access the data quickly. I have to say TeraRecon really helped tremendously for me to accomplish my everyday work.

WHAT ARE THE MOST SIGNIFICANT IMPROVEMENTS THAT HAVE RESULTED FROM IMPLEMENTING TERARECON?

I think TeraRecon really helps us to streamline a lot of the work going around within our health system. I would be able to talk to doctor from anywhere in our health system. If they need my expertise, I would be able to access the data and then put it right in front of me, so that I can look at it quickly and offer my opinion. That to me is very, very critical especially when we are dealing with very complex cardiac disease in our health system. I can offer almost instantaneous opinion and expert opinion, which I think is crucial.

WHAT PROGRAMS ARE USING TERARECON IN THIS ORGANIZATION?

We are currently using TeraRecon for many things from routine bread and butter cardiac CTA imaging, to calcium scoring, to TAVI. We are working with TeraRecon to develop software for mitral valve clipping. We use it for a lot of the aortic surgery and congenital heart disease. We also use TeraRecon for our cardiac MRI evaluation.

WHAT IS MOST IMPRESSIVE ABOUT THE INTUITION SOLUTION OR THE TERARECON TEAM TO YOU?

TeraRecon has been working with me for many years, so I know TeraRecon, the system. I always get the support I need - they are just a phone call away. They always help me to solve a lot of the technical issues. If we have any software glitches, I can call and get a reply almost immediately.  That level of service is very important to me.

Also, we work directly with the engineers at TeraRecon to develop even better software. I think that type of bidirectional interaction really helps improve the product and makes us more productive.

HOW HAS TERARECON CHANGED OVER THE YEARS THAT YOU HAVE BEEN USING IT?

I have been working with TeraRecon for more than 15 years. I have seen the transformation of TeraRecon from just a simple viewer of 3D cardiac images to now where we can do a lot of high level quantitative analysis, particularly in the field of structural heart disease.

TeraRecon has developed a lot of automated software to allow us to analyze the case and plan the procedure much more quickly. The web solution is essential because it allows us to be able to access it from anywhere. All these have really been very important new developments within TeraRecon that make the whole field of advanced cardiac imaging very exciting and doable.

CAN YOU TELL ME A LITTLE BIT ABOUT YOUR CAREER ROADMAP UP UNTIL THIS POINT AND HOW TERARECON HAS BEEN ABLE TO FIT INTO THAT?

When I started, I was running a small program in a small hospital. As my career progressed over the past 15 years, I began managing larger and larger groups of imagers and more hospitals.

TeraRecon has been able to keep up with me and grow with me, and able to provide solutions to solve many of the challenges that I face every day. I am happy that TeraRecon has been able to grow and adapt to the changing needs of the user.

IF A POTENTIAL CLIENT WAS TRYING TO DECIDE WHETHER TO SELECT TERARECON AS THEIR PROJECT OR THEIR SOLUTION, WHAT WOULD YOU SAY? WHAT WOULD BE YOUR ADVICE TO THEM?

I think the most important recommendation I would give to a person looking at the different solutions is to put his or her hands on the software to see if it is intuitive. That was my initial impression with TeraRecon, that it is very intuitive. You need a system that works with the human mind, the way that humans look at the image. The software has to work together with the human user. That is where I find TeraRecon very unique in that it is very intuitive. The way that I like to see my image move, the way I like to see the image to go from one form or presentation to another must occur seamlessly. That's something that I find with TeraRecon that is very, very important, particularly to the beginner.

AS AN INSTRUCTOR OF MEDICAL STUDENTS, DOCTORS, AND RESIDENTS, HOW HAS TERARECON BETTER ENABLED YOU TO TEACH TO THOSE DIFFERENT LEVELS?

I have been using TeraRecon for teaching students; from medical students, to college students, even to high school students. To teach them about the heart and the vascular system. Instead of showing the student a plastic model, I have a real image of a real patient to show the details of the inside of the heart, the cardiac structure.

I think that is very, very important for educating the younger generation to appreciate cardiac disease and cardiac imaging. Also, when explaining the different pathologies, using a real cardiac image is so important. I've been very comfortable using TeraRecon as a teaching tool for students and even for doctors.

IN YOUR OPINION, WHAT ARE THE COMING PROBLEMS THAT WE ARE GOING TO HAVE TO FACE IN HEALTHCARE?

I think we have been dealing with the limited resources, but we also want to innovate. In order to do more with less, we need better tools and we need more efficient tools. We need software that can help us to do more in a shorter period of time in order to make up for the difference.

I think TeraRecon can certainly, using artificial intelligence, help us to analyze data quickly so that we can do more cases. With the reduction in reimbursement, the only way you can make up for it is to do more. I think this is a challenge that we are going to be faced with, and so we need partners in helping to solve the problem together.

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