Grid-enabled mammographic auditing and training system

2010-06-03T10:27:15Z (GMT) by Moi Hoon Yap Alastair G. Gale
Effective use of new technologies to support healthcare initiatives is important and current research is moving towards implementing secure grid-enabled healthcare provision. In the UK, a large-scale collaborative research project (GIMI: Generic Infrastructures for Medical Informatics), which is concerned with the development of a secure IT infrastructure to support very widespread medical research across the country, is underway. In the UK, there are some 109 breast screening centers and a growing number of individuals (circa 650) nationally performing approximately 1.5 million screening examinations per year. At the same, there is a serious, and ongoing, national workforce issue in screening which has seen a loss of consultant mammographers and a growth in specially trained technologists and other nonradiologists. Thus there is a need to offer effective and efficient mammographic training so as to maintain high levels of screening skills. Consequently, a grid based system has been proposed which has the benefit of offering very large volumes of training cases that the mammographers can access anytime and anywhere. A database, spread geographically across three university systems, of screening cases is used as a test set of known cases. The GIMI mammography training system first audits these cases to ensure that they are appropriately described and annotated. Subsequently, the cases are utilized for training in a grid-based system which has been developed. This paper briefly reviews the background to the project and then details the ongoing research. In conclusion, we discuss the contributions, limitations, and future plans of such a grid based approach.