Interested in implementing digital pathology in your practice? Choosing the right vendors can be a daunting task. There are so many options available and factors to consider. In this blog post, we will explore ten common mistakes pathologists can make when choosing a digital pathology solution.
1. Focusing solely on cost
While cost is an important factor to consider when choosing a digital pathology solution, you should also take into account its capabilities, the vendor’s reputation, customer support, and most importantly, the return on your investment (ROI). Without a clear ROI, a lower expenditure may actually cost you more in the end.
2. Not considering workflow integration
It is critical to choose a digital pathology solution that improves your existing workflow. Understand how the changes will make your current workflow better and how readily your organization can adapt to the new processes.
3. Ignoring the user’s experience
Consider how intuitive and user-friendly the software is, and what the system will be like for you to use daily. Ask the vendor for a free demo so you can try it before you buy. Theoretical improvements can be negated by impractical and burdensome workflow requirements.
4. Not considering regulatory compliance and security
Select a digital pathology solution that complies with all relevant regulatory requirements, including robust security features to protect patient data. Does it follow the most up-to-date regulations from HIPAA, HITECH, and other relevant requirements? What about CLIA and CAP guidelines? Vendors should have the documentation they can provide upfront to prove compliance, but if that documentation does not satisfy your questions you should discuss with their Information Security Officer.
5. Choosing a solution with limited scalability
Find out how scalable the system is, that is, whether it is designed to grow and adapt to your needs as your practice grows.
6. Not considering interoperability
Choose a solution that works well with other systems and solutions, such as EHRs and Laboratory Information Systems.
7. Not involving key stakeholders in the decision-making process
Be sure to involve laboratory personnel, IT professionals, Pathologists’ Assistants, and pathologists who will be using the technology to ensure that the chosen solution meets everyone’s needs.
8. Failing to consider personal security
Not only do you need to ensure the software’s security and compliance, but you also need to make sure that all devices you will use for work are secure and compliant.
9. Not considering the long-term costs
While it’s necessary to factor in the upfront costs of digital pathology, you should also consider any long-term costs, such as maintenance, upgrades, and training.
10. Not ensuring that it is AI-compatible
Artificial intelligence is making its mark in digital pathology and will continue to grow. Whether or not you are planning to use AI now, choose a system that can support adding it on later.
Selecting the right digital pathology solution requires careful consideration and evaluation of multiple factors. By avoiding the most common mistakes, the decisions you make are much more likely to meet your needs and provide long-term value.
Are you ready to start using or change to a new digital pathology solution? Our image management system, Viewer+®, is cost-effective, scalable, integrates with any LIS, is compliant and secure, and you can choose from our large list of AI partners to use their algorithms. Schedule a demo with us today to learn more.