By Ison Rocky A

Huawei iLab has officially released its Medical Imaging Cloud Scenario White Paper. Using the current status of the healthcare industry and the service characteristics of medical images as a basis, the White Paper analyzes and identifies five application scenarios that are most closely related to operators, have the most commercial potential, and are most likely to be implemented: cloud image storage, imaging cloud application, cloud-based medical collaboration, cloud-based medical education, and cloud-based health management. This information can then be used by operators to develop the medical imaging cloud market.

As medical imaging technologies continue to develop, the amount of image data being generated has grown enormously, a fact that now poses higher requirements on the data storage and processing capabilities of medical IT systems. A traditional picture archiving and communication system (PACS) cannot read or share data sufficiently, and as a result, it is difficult to obtain the full application value of historical medical images. In the interim, China’s National Health Commission (NHC) has proposed establishing a medical union and a regional healthcare system that promote collaborating over and sharing medical image data. Platform- and cloud-based medical image data is therefore becoming a trend of the industry. Operators can construct medical imaging clouds and connect them with information systems at medical institutions using cloud computing and Internet technologies, storing and sharing medical images on the cloud.

By carrying out in-depth research into the features of medical image services, user experience requirements, and the overall business value, Huawei iLab has been able to identify for operators the most commercial application scenarios.

Scenario 1: Cloud image storage

It implements the storage and interaction of large amounts of image data for medical institutions, and helps to achieve multi-level disaster recovery and backup. This in turn ensures that medical institutions can provide services continuously and stably in the event of a natural disaster, hard disk fault, hack, or human damage. This scenario is suitable for operators expanding their B2B cloud storage services.

Scenario 2: Imaging cloud application

The PACS is cloudified, and image data can be exchanged between multiple medical institutions. Images can also be read on the cloud. Cloud image processing functions, such as image comparison, image fusion display, and 3D reconstruction, help doctors find and diagnose causes of diseases quickly and accurately, improving the overall efficiency of diagnoses. Mobile imaging clouds are also supported, which enables doctors and patients to view images and diagnosis reports anytime and anywhere, and facilitates communication between doctors and patients. This scenario is suitable for operators promoting their B2B cloud-based PACS and mobile image reading services.

Scenario 3: Cloud-based medical collaboration

Building regional imaging cloud centers and remote imaging consultation centers helps to implement the centralized storage and sharing of image data for the medical institutions in a specified region. This also serves to optimize the distribution of healthcare resources and improves the quality and efficiency of healthcare services, thereby facilitating the implementation of a hierarchical diagnosis and treatment system. This scenario is suitable for operators providing remote B2B imaging and consultation services for medical unions.

Scenario 4: Cloud-based medical education

Based on the medical imaging cloud platform, this implements functions such as online image lessons, live surgical demonstrations, VR/AR/MR virtual imaging lessons, and online image discussions. These functions are highly interactive. They overcome geographical constraints, make the distribution of quality medical education resources more balanced, and help to economize Chinese Government’s investment in medical education. This scenario is suitable for operators providing B2B cloud image lessons and B2C live surgery broadcasts.

Scenario 5: Cloud-based health management

This implements a number of cloud services, including chronic disease and inspection data management. It provides online health consultations, online guidance, scheduled referrals, follow-ups, and extended prescription services. This saves patients’ time, reduces pressure on medical institutions, and allows people to consult on and manage their health more quickly and efficiently. This scenario is suitable for operators providing 2C online health consultation services.

Huawei iLab believes that with support from government policies and the development of cloud computing and Internet technologies, medical institutions are accelerating the deployment of medical imaging clouds. It also notes that more and more operators are stepping into the field of medical imaging clouds. With good network infrastructure, cloud-based data centers, and powerful O&M support, operators can join forces with ecosystem partners and build a holistic medical imaging cloud solution – one that significantly improves the efficiency and quality of healthcare collaboration and provides better services for doctors, patients, and medical institutions alike. In this regard, Huawei is keen to work with operators on accelerating the cloud transformation of the healthcare industry and expanding the industry’s market space.

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