The data was gathered from radiology departments at university hospitals in Finland and healthcare centers in the treatment area of responsibility of the Oulu University Hospital. Display technology, quality control practices and users experiences of viewing were determined using questionnaires. Technical measurements were performed in order to acquire information on displays performance and viewing conditions. In addition, observation was used to evaluate viewing conditions.
Almost all displays at radiological departments were applicable for diagnostics. At healthcare centers all displays were inapplicable for diagnostics. Both organization groups had displays using obsolete cathode ray tube technology and these displays did not pass current acceptance criteria. Most radiology departments had viewing conditions which were compatible with existing guidelines, whereas at healthcare centers lighting conditions were too bright for viewing radiological images from displays. Acceptance testing was done only for few of the displays and quality control was not performed regularly. Personnel responsible for quality assurance felt they were provided with inadequate resources for performing display quality control. Clinicians at healthcare centers did not identify the poor performance of displays. Radiologists and clinicians at healthcare centers rarely performed quality assurance for displays.
The quality of displays, viewing conditions and the assessment of display performance at healthcare organizations was not at the level required by the existing guidelines. Both the cathode ray tube displays and uncalibrated liquid crystal displays should either be replaced with new ones or calibrated. Lighting and positioning of displays ought to be rearranged in order to diminish reflections. Furthermore, doctors ought to be able to rearrange lighting conditions with ease. More resources ought to be directed to display quality control and different quality control practices should be unified. Both the users and the quality control personnel should also be provided with more training in display quality control. Regular display quality control should be extended to all healthcare organizations. Clinicians working at healthcare centers should be provided with adequate training in the use of image viewing software.
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