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  1. Queries against PACS systems
    1. what does it mean for each site?
    2. what is the process a PI has to go through?

Harvard Catalyst Medical Informatics group Meeting Minutes October 20, 2009

In attendance:

  • Valerie Humblet
  • Yong Gao
  • Shawn Murphy
  • Diane Keogh
  • Mike Mendis
  • Steve Pieper
  • Michael Clyne
  • Kathy Andriole
  • Alexander Zaitsev
  • Charles Guttmann
  • Ron Kikinis
  • Wendy Plesniak
  • Bill Hanlon
  • Karl Helmer
  • Jesse Wei

Use case

A PI searches the coded data in i2b2 and get a set of patients with imaging data. He runs a query against the PACS system to find the data and transfer them to a XNAT research system. Once his study is finished, XNAT will then be used to send results of the research to i2b2.


  • It is crucial for this group to learn very specific details about how to query the PACS system at each institution to support secondary research studies.
    • This week we learned about the process at BWH and BIDMC.
    • The information gathered is not to be shared publicly outside of this group. A spreadsheet with the the requirements for each institution was created and will be hosted on a secured website. Members of this group will received the username and password to access the site at the next meeting.
  • The group will have to decide if it makes sense to work with all the sites at once or if the work should start with one site that is almost ready.
    • There might be some easy use cases at different institutions. Charles (BWH) proposed the Multiple Sclerosis case (MS neurologist, 17,000 clinical MRI scans serving for research).
  • Shawn pointed that it is very important to learn how ready the different sites are. We have to make sure that we have the support and permission at each site. Each site will have its own infrastructure. We have to learn what are the services available from the PACS system at each institution.
  • One problem mentioned at the previous meetings is that not all radiologists agree that all data should be shared. It is not a concern specific to Radiology, the same concerns were raised for i2b2.
    • Some institutions mentioned the creation of review committees, separate from the IRB, that will grant or not access to the data.
    • Even if the task of this group is to work out the technical details, we must be aware of the policy issues and the filter mechanisms that institutions might create.