Revolutionizing Diagnostic Imaging with Vendor Neutral Archives

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Today’s healthcare organizations must invest in open source IT to ensure business growth and longevity. This tranisition will dramatically enhance IT performance and improve the speed and quality of patient care. 

In today’s digital economy, IT performance is critical to business growth and longevity. Particularly in the life sciences industry, the ability to operate quickly and securely means increasing workplace productivity, driving competitive advantage, and improving patient outcomes.

Healthcare organizations rely on vast quantities of data to make fast, informed decisions regarding patient diagnoses and care; however, legacy technologies and poor data management capabilities are causing major inefficiencies across healthcare IT environments. These bottlenecks not only limit data access, but they can also slow collaboration between remote locations and devices as well as increase the likelihood of data loss.

Proliferating mobility is empowering healthcare professionals to quickly access and share data, collaborate on cases, discuss treatment plans, and much more. Efficient communication among physicians and their patients is vital to any successful business strategy; therefore, retrieving information securely and in real time is essential to delivering quality patient-centric care. In fact, a survey conducted by the Clinical Data Interchange Standards Consortium (CDISC) found that 93% of healthcare professionals believe efficient data interchange between different parties is essential, and 69% feel their existing IT applications lack the “adequate functionality” to meet their escalating needs.

In order to enhance the performance of healthcare operations, IT departments must move away from proprietary or closed source software environments and invest in open source solutions.


Most healthcare organizations use proprietary technology, such as a picture archiving and communications system (PACS), and rely on a particular vendor to provide necessary upgrades. This model “locks in” users to a single solution, which restricts data performance and hinders communication with hospitals or health systems outside of their IT silo domain.

Today’s healthcare organizations utilize a picture archiving and communications system (PACS) to store, retrieve, visualize, and share a variety of diagnostic files—such as x-rays, CT scans, MRIs, and ultrasounds. Major vendors have been selling proprietary PACS for the past three decades, and while these databases are widely used to harness medical data, a growing number of users are feeling the strain of insufficient speed and accessibility.

Vendor neutral archives (VNAs) are now being implemented in some healthcare settings to augment data stores so that users can access images from a variety of devices. Empowering users with complex graphics in a common environment, as well as an affordable path to open architecture, reduces reliance on proprietary, legacy architectures. VNAs distinguish themselves from PACS by providing a consolidated archiving platform to host images and imaging hardware from different sources and vendors. And unlike PACS, which requires vulnerable data stores in multiple locations, VNAs leverage a common interface that keeps data safe in the data center, remaining compliant with HIPAA regulations. This allows users to access images associated with individual patients and easily translate graphics data into a number of formats and onto a variety of devices, with little concern over compatibility.

Healthcare organizations stand to gain key advantages from open source VNAs:

  • Seamless data migration from PACS archives
  • More effective data control and management
  • Digital Imaging and Communications in Medicine(DICOM) standard interface for storage, query, and retrieval of images and composite objects
  • Easy integration of new imaging applications from different vendors
  • Increased cost savings and IT flexibility to accommodate future growth
  • Highly secure data access for remote users from a centralized archive in the data center

VNAs are already driving improvements across multiple industries, like Manufacturing and Engineering and Energy/Oil and Gas, enabling users to leverage breakthrough imaging techniques to improve business outcomes.


PACS provide layers of 2D images which users view manually, moving from image to image, and render in 3D environments. Instead, imagine if they could render an anatomically correct heart and look inside to rapidly and accurately diagnose patients. VNAs can deliver the 3D capabilities, real-time data access, and data rendering required by healthcare professionals.

Hewlett Packard Enterprise (HPE) and NVIDIA are offering revolutionary medical imaging and data management capabilities. HPE and NVIDIA are helping customers to leverage fully rendered 3D graphics with powerful NVIDIA GPUs and the extensive compute capabilities of HPE’s high-density server platforms and solutions. HPE Synergy, an integrated composable infrastructure platform, can host numerous sessions locally from the data center and simultaneously to remote iPads and other personal devices. HPE Synergy is a high-density solution that provides superior user density, flexibility, and manageability to support multiple users accessing high-resolution graphics at one time (e.g. real-time patient image rendering and other graphics-intensive applications). This reference platform harnesses high performance NVIDIA GPUs and market-leading GPU virtualization software from NVIDIA to deliver an optimized database solution, helping organizations provision and scale efficiently.

With NVIDIA GPUs and NVIDIA virtual GPU technology, IT can accelerate VNA performance, host multiple workloads on servers simultaneously, and rapidly visualize data on remote devices. More specifically, with the NVIDIA GRID software product administrators direct control of GPU resource allocation for multiple users. NVIDIA GRID enables more virtual applications with richer, real-time user experiences as well as improved business agility, increased performance, and optimal user density from high performance computing servers and increased security compliance.  With support for Citrix® and VMware® Horizon 7, NVIDIA GRID is enabling secure, mobile, digital collaboration, helping medical teams increasingly leverage mobile technologies to make faster and more accurate decisions regarding patient care.

Together, HPE and NVIDIA are pioneering a new era of patient care. To stay up to date on the continued progress of PACS to VNA, I invite you to follow me on Twitter at @Bill_Mannel. And check out @HPE_HPC and @NvidiaAI for more information on how GPU-accelerated computing and virtualization solutions improve diagnostic imaging.

Bill Mannel
VP & GM – HPC & AI Segment Solutions

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