CHARLESTON, Ill., March 3, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Virtual Radiologic (vRad), a technology-enabled national radiology practice, and Lakeland Radiologists, Ltd., a Central Illinois-based radiology practice serving Champaign/Urbana, Effingham, Danville and surrounding areas, announced the launch of a strategic alliance, merging Lakeland with an affiliated medical practice of vRad. The practice will be called Lakeland Radiology Alliance, and will offer Lakeland facilities greater access to subspecialists, next-generation technology, clinical data benchmarking and the shared expertise of over 325 radiologists nationwide. The collaborative effort will enhance the quality and efficiency of imaging services for the hospitals and patients Lakeland serves.
Lakeland is a multisite practice that has operated for over 30 years. The practice is currently comprised of 15 radiologists serving four regional hospitals and numerous affiliated and freestanding clinics across 500 square miles. "As we looked at growth of our practice and the changing landscape of the healthcare industry, we had to find more efficient ways to meet the increasing demands for our services," said Dr. Aldo Ruffolo, Lakeland's medical director. "We had been providing traditional onsite radiology for years, which was becoming increasingly challenging in our broad geography without a fully integrated teleradiology solution," he added. "We had three different PACS systems and needed a unified work list across all sites with access to subspecialty coverage, especially for our smaller critical-access hospital customers."
While weighing the cost and associated risk of new technology and additional staffing, Lakeland approached vRad initially for their industry-leading Enterprise Connect technology, the core platform vRad uses to manage and read more than 7 million studies annually from 2,700 facilities. The technology is especially beneficial to a practice like Lakeland where radiologists work across disparate systems in different facilities separated by many miles and precious minutes. "vRad's technology will help improve communications to hospitals, practices and patients," added Ruffolo. "We were excited to join vRad as an alliance partner to improve and grow our practice."
"Working with our radiology practice customers to deliver technology solutions has enabled us to forge deeper relationships and employ creative solutions that were not previously available," said Rob Kill, vRad president and chief executive officer. "As the healthcare market continues to rapidly evolve, we see demands for new and more integrated care delivery models that can expand access, improve quality and reduce costs. Partnerships like these are becoming an important tool to reduce overall costs through technology-driven efficiencies. Our Lakeland alliance extends our long-standing commitment to serve local radiology groups, not compete with them, collaborating to enhance quality delivery of innovative radiology services."
Lakeland Radiology Alliance is the latest in vRad's successful radiology practice partnerships. The formation of New York Radiology Alliance, a 60-radiologist practice serving 12 hospitals and 30 other imaging centers and clinics in New York, was announced last August, and has already seen improved service and efficiency. "We are looking forward to having the Lakeland physicians join our practice," said Kill. "Our infrastructure flexibly supports our alliance partners and their growth, as we help them better serve their customers, increase efficiency and provide quality care to patients."
About Virtual Radiologic
Virtual Radiologic (vRad) is a technology-enabled national radiology practice working in partnership with local radiologists and hospitals to optimize radiology's pivotal role in patient care. vRad's more than 325 radiologists serve 2,700+ facilities, reading 7 million studies annually. Delivering access to extensive subspecialty coverage, vRad contributes to improved quality of patient care. And with its next-generation technology, vRad enhances productivity, helping to lower the overall cost of care while expediting time to diagnosis and treatment. For more information, visit www.vrad.com. For real-time updates, follow @vRad on Twitter.
SOURCE Virtual Radiologic