How IMC Works With Clients
The most important part of the PACS planning process actually has very little to do with detailed vendor technical assessment, but rather an assessment of the entire hospital’s integrated imaging requirements and how PACS can help meet those needs. Those requirements vary based on the size of the facility- IMC has worked with and implemented PACS at facilities as small as 50 beds and as large over 1,500 beds, as well many multi-site networked solutions. We understand the challenges each facility offers, including differences in reimbursement mix, competitive issues, and even making the most out of the investments made in PACS technology at the facility. These issues are all discussed before an agreement is signed..
Before we engage in any contract IMC generally requests that we spend at least one, and with larger facilities two (2) days with the client to determine the suitability of the account for engagement in PACS consulting contract. This protects your interest as well as ours. The majority of the first day will be spent in basic information gathering, with the balance of the day spent discussing key issues with the CTO, CIO, CFO and others. The second morning would be spent touring additional sitese. All involved parties from all sites would then gather in the early afternoon of the second day to discuss options and your specific requirements and answer general questions the team might have about PACS. The cost for this service is deducted from the first invoice should IMC be awarded an engagement. A report summarizing the day’s findings can also be generated if/as desired.
The reason for this day-log walkthrough is to determine the account’s suitability for PACS. Even though it seems you have spent an extensive amount of time in evaluating PACS, this gives you the “sanity check” you need before engaging a consultant. IMC has defined what it calls the one-third (1/3) rule based on its extensive experience in PACS planning and implementations. Simply defined 1/3 of the hospitals who need PACS are prepared to insure a successful PACS implementation; 1/3 need PACS but require shoring up of network infrastructure or other areas before PACS can be successfully implemented as well as embarking on projects which may clash with your projected PACS timetable (example: planned upgrades or clinical systems integration surrounding you’re his/RIS); and the last 1/3 want PACS to solve problems that PACS simply can not solve. While we are confident that you feel site is ready for PACS this also assures the chemistry between the PACS project coordinator and the staff members who will make up the evaluation team at is positive, allowing your decision to be made on a more personal level than one based on an RFP response only.
Virtually of IMC’s engagements are long term, even though the contract may have expired. We feel once you are an IMC client, you remain an IMC client for life. The “long term client” approach is one that does not impede on current contracts (most simply ask a question or two on the phone periodically or, at worse, request a day’s time) and is another benefit that IMC provides as a value added for engaging our services. Several clients have also re-engaged IMC for follow-on PACS or related projects like cardiology PACS or even RIS assistance. A few select hospitals have also elected to keep us on an ongoing retainer for use as needed. Although not necessary, this is an option you may wish to explore as well.
Other Important Components
How Long Does An Engagement with IMC Typically Last?
Time line varies however globally planning services (including cost modeling) take between 6 and 12 weeks, and implementation from 4 to 10 months. IMC has elected to employ a small yet concise group to insure that we stay as close to the projected time frame a possible. It must be noted that in IMC’s experience time lines will slip by anywhere from two (2) weeks to two (2) months regardless of how tight the implementation plan is. No project has ever come in on time regardless of how many people were involved or how tight the time line, so be advised of anyone who indicates otherwise- it just doesn’t happen that way.
How we work:
IMC typically works with our clients on a per project “soup to nuts” basis, beginning with needs assessment and finishing with project management through implementation. These services can and often are tailored to specifically meet the clients needs and budgets and include use of IMC’s services until the defined tasks are completed. This “whatever it takes” approach allows us to insure that the needs of our clients are adequately met without the constraints found with a billable hours approach. This also allows you to precisely budget costs for our involvement in the project.
How Much Does It Cost to Use IMC?
The cost of the project is typically determined after a one-day walkthrough and varies from a single day assessment to a multi-phase, multi-year engagement. Most of our engagements are “soup to nuts” include both the project planning and implementation phases (project plan, cost modeling, RFP development, assessment and contract negotiations). These project fees are divided roughly as 60% for planning and 40% for implementation services. All services can be tailored to meet the individual client needs. Detailed process reengineering planning services that we feel is required for a successful PACS implementation are optional and additional, although highly recommended.
All IMC’s services are billed based on the achievement of defined benchmarks and typically invoiced in arrears of achievement of these benchmarks. The only “up front” monies provided is the initial down payment on the contract services to get started, as much of the work performed is done prior to invoicing. We have never had a client walk away, and try to be fair from fee structure wise if the project cannot be completed for reasons outside the control of the client, including the loss of budgeted funds. In these instances, we invoice only for the services rendered to date.