Instead of patients carrying CDs or printouts of ultrasounds, MRIs, PET scans, mammograms and other diagnostic images from doctor to doctor, MyMedImage wants to enable them to manage, share and store their own images — and to do it for free.
That’s a lofty goal. To help it get there, the physician-led California startup is campaigning to raise $200,000 through Indiegogo.
CEO Dr. Christopher Hancock said MyMedImage circumvents the interoperability of hospital systems’ EMR and picture archiving and communications systems. It’s a DICOM-compliant, cloud-based service designed to let patients and providers upload, archive, transmit, download and transmit images.
The lack of sharing of diagnostic images between healthcare systems hinders communication between patients and doctors, and sometimes even delays care decisions because images have to be re-taken, or transported physically via CD. That’s a problem that’s addressed in the upcoming stage 2 of meaningful use.
MyMedImage is positioning itself as a people-focused solution to a medical-business-created problem.
“A lot of systems charge millions of dollars for picture archiving and communications systems – do they truly want them to be interoperable?” Hancock said. “We’re designed to participate through HL7 and other interoperability standards. We’re taking standardized DICOM data and stripping all of the vendor-specific data to make it available to any kind of software.”
The vision is that a patient could obtain a CD of their image, upload it to MyMedImage and push a button to export to whatever imaging facility or hospital system they wish. Then, the appropriate providers could access patients’ images on a computer or mobile device, potentially preventing duplicate medical images. By serving as a telemedicine tool, the company thinks it could also enable specialized care to underserved areas of the world.
Hancock said the system would be free to patients and paid for by an imaging facility, a payer, a physicians practice or a hospital, for example.
The team bootstrapped development of the software and now needs to hire additional staff to handle the 24/7 tech support to scale, Hancock said. The Indiegogo campaign, which has brought in a little over $10,000, goes through the end of the month.
Cool idea, but I wonder if it will encounter some of the same challenges of PHR adoption?
[Image credit: MyMedImage]