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Citizens Provides High Tech Enhanced Care

 When leaders at Citizens Baptist Medical Center first decided to enhance the hospital's diagnostic imaging services, they realized that the expertise they needed was right in their own backyard. Within Baptist Health System - at Princeton Baptist - were physicians who had precisely the type of expertise Citizens wanted to round out its imaging program. So began the combining of knowledge and technology to form an integrated relationship between the two hospitals.


Under the new relationship, radiologists from Princeton visit Citizens on weekly rotations. Along with the sharing of physicians is the sharing of intellectual resources via digital technology. Thanks to the advanced technology at both hospitals, a type of "virtual reading room" concept was created. Radiologists at both locations can view and consult on patients of either hospital. For Citizens, this means having access to specialties and areas of expertise typically only found in larger, metropolitan hospitals. For Princeton, it means continuity of care for patients regardless of the physician's location on any particular day.


According to Dr. Bryan Billions, one of the participating radiologists and medical director of Citizens BMC's imaging services, "another attractive aspect of this partnership was the seamless transition and integration. Both hospitals were familiar with the virtual reading room concept and knew the efficiencies that could be gained. For example, if I'm at Citizens and need to consult with a radiologist at Princeton who has expertise in a specific area, we can look at the same image, simultaneously, to discuss the course of treatment." The partnership is a great example of how both hospitals are utilizing the strengths of the Baptist system.


Digital technology plays a key role in enabling the partnership to take place. Larry Harris, director of imaging at Citizens, understands the importance of technology. "The commitment to technology at Citizens is ongoing. Since the digital world is ever-changing, we have to maintain the systems we have while continuing to upgrade. We're going to stay on the cutting-edge - our goal is to have a totally digital imaging department. But, this not about technology just for technology's sake. Everyone deserves the best quality care we can give. New technology is about change for the benefit of the patient."


Offering a greater depth of services to the community is ultimately what this partnership is about. It's a way to serve locally by taking advantage of being part of a bigger health care system.


Keeping up with the ever-improving technology in health care is a constant challenge for hospitals. Your support to BHS hospitals through gifts to the Baptist Health Foundation can help. Learn more by contacting the Foundation toll-free at 1-877-474-4243.

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