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Sony’s Healthcare Technology Solutions for the Operating Room

by | Alec Olson

Keeping patient data secure is of the utmost importance in medical facilities. With that in mind, it’s understandable why doctors would keep a tight grip on their portable USB hard drives so as not to lose that key-sized device carrying very sensitive data.

Some doctors use these devices to manually transfer data, including surgical video or imagery, onto a hospital’s network for use on PowerPoint presentations for training and education purposes.

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That data allows doctors to help the next generation work more efficiently to provide better care to their patients worldwide.

However, if you think about that important process, that little USB carries a lot of responsibility – and a lot of risk, since they're easily misplaced.

“USBs, external hard drives are the favorite right now,” said David Kurowski, medical business development manager at Sony. “But we’re trying to push that [doctors] stop using the external devices and use Sony's Content Management System over the hospital's network to make it more secure.”

Sony’s medical product line includes a content management system (CMS) that’s designed specifically for doctors. It has a YouTube type of feel, Kurowski said, with a central dashboard that contains all of the doctor’s data, including shared video and imagery.

What’s more, the CMS is secure and HIPAA-compliant.


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Hospital administrators can set parameters to restrict access to certain individuals, limiting what people can view, edit and share. What this means is that only those who are authorized to access the CMS and specific data can view it under firm permissions and hospital-enacted policies.

Some of Sony’s devices can also encrypt the data to bring an extra layer of security to sensitive information.

When doctors log in to the CMS, they would only see their individual data. There’s a separate dashboard within the CMS that shows shared data.

From there, doctors can easily sort and search for videos or images using over 255 metadata parameters, including patient name and procedure date.

How does it work with the rest of Sony’s medical technology?

Sony has a full line of medical-grade, FDA-approved technology, including monitors, displays, recorders and overhead cameras, that capture video in HD and 4K and. Using the company’s IP Converter, analog, HD or 4K data is transferred directly to the CMS in a secure way or streamed live.

Using an IP Converter in the operating room would allow surgeons to stream the procedure to another secure location in real time. “From a training and education standpoint, residents don’t necessarily have to be in the OR to see what’s happening in real time,” said Julie Holodak, senior marketing manager at Sony – Medical. “They can have access to the video later to review cases.”

“It’s kind of groundbreaking in the sense that it bridges what’s happening inside the OR to outside the OR.”

This medical technology solution gives doctors, nurses, IT professionals, and anybody who has the authorization, the ability to see what’s happening in the operating room.

“It’s kind of groundbreaking in the sense that it bridges what’s happening inside the OR to outside the OR.”

During a procedure, authorized staff and hospital personnel have a direct window into the operating room, even if they’re sitting in an auditorium, at a nurse’s desk down the hall, or at a doctor’s private office across the globe.

“And this is important because doctors want to use their video, particularly surgeons, to train and educate,” Holodak continued. “Or to share information about procedures and treatments with the patient or patient’s family, and collaborate with other physicians not just locally within the hospital, but really globally around the world with other experts in their field.”

Sony has been making a big push to bring this technology to the medical field to better the experience for doctors and their patients.

When it’s brought into the hospitals, into the operating rooms, doctors are seeing a big difference, she said.

“The higher resolution of 4K allows surgeons to see more clearly,” Holodak said. “Now, that technology is very rapidly being integrated into the operating room.”

However, as 4K video continues to enter the medical landscape, the need for storing, editing and sharing that video rises. Meeting that demand, though, isn’t an issue, given Sony’s background in broadcast, Holodak said.

"4K technology is very rapidly being integrated into the operating room.”

Referring to Sony’s CMS, Medical Product Marketing Manager Anne Bondulich said, “We know a lot of surgeons are recording. There aren’t that many content management systems on the market – and we believe ours is the best – whereby a surgeon can access their video anytime they want to and do simple edits or share it with other clinicians or surgeons or symposiums around the world and do simple edits, using the software, and even stream the surgery from the OR to an auditorium for training and education purposes.”

Echoing Bondulich’s statement, Holodak said that she sees an upward trend of more doctors recording their surgeries for various reasons. “They want to share and teach others new procedures or techniques,” she explained. “Maybe to shorten the length of the procedure or the length of time patients stay in a hospital.”

“And certainly, you can speak to all that on a PowerPoint, but when you’re seeing that on a prerecorded video or a live surgery, it’s way more impactful.”

“The products and services we’re offering are really changing the way doctors are using video in the OR.”

This latest push by Sony to invest more into the medical field was partially sparked by 4K coming onto the market and doctors seeing its benefits in the operating room. And, historically, Sony has been known for its quality broadcast equipment, which, Holodak said, makes it seamless to integrate this technology into the medical field.

“It’s a great time transition,” she said. “The products and services we’re offering are really changing the way doctors are using video in the OR.”

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