b<>com welcomes the DICOM Standards Committee

On April 5, b<>com is hosting the DICOM Standards Committee at its Rennes campus to discuss the specifications of tomorrow. Emmanuel Cordonnier, Director of e-health, told us about the global standard for medical imaging.

What’s DICOM?

Like jpeg for photos, DICOM is the global standard for medical imaging. When you go see you radiologist, all the images produced by the radiography machines, the ultrasound, the CT-scans, and the MRIs, which the radiologist reads on her computer, are in DICOM format. DICOM is also recognized as a standard by AFNOR, the CEN, and the ISO.

What is the DICOM Standards Committee?

A standard is drafted by stakeholder organizations, users (radiologists, surgeons, physicians, etc.), and suppliers (radiology equipment makers, medical imaging server makers, etc.), which meet within workgroups, about 30 or so for DICOM, to produce new specifications. The DICOM Standards Committee is the decision-making body for all groups, which decides on whether or not to launch a new extension and adopts the proposed specification. It currently includes 63 international organizations, nearly half of which are suppliers.

Why is it important for us in France to participate in this standard?

Much like the Internet, DICOM helps to create a consistent ecosystem that allows numerous independent players from industrial giants to provide applications, products, and services with high added value. Whether based on Artificial Intelligence or not, provided in the form of software, apps, or services in SaaS mode, the existence of such a standard is a real opportunity for French companies, such as ACETIAM which was able to equip 500 French hospitals so they could exchange images for teleradiology, strokes, or transplants.

Why did they choose b<>com for their meeting?

The DICOM Standards Committee meets three times a year, including once in Chicago at the RSNA annual radiology meeting at the end of the year, once in Asia, and once in Europe. After meeting in Paris in 2015, the committee returns to France this year, in Rennes where health is a major topic this year. That's because Rennes is also hosting the IHE Connectathon in mid-April and the CARS conference in June. b<>com is heavily involved in standardization in general, and DICOM in particular. We are currently working on a new real-time version of DICOM, tested successfully for the first time ever in January at Rennes CHU University Hospital. The event at b<>com will be an opportunity to perform a demonstration for members of the upcoming DICOM-RTV standard’s committee.