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The Impacts of Integrating Picture Archiving and Communication System (PACS) in Medical Education on Trainees.
With advancements in technology, Picture Archiving and Communication System (PACS) in Radiology and Radiography has played an essential role in archiving and retrieving medical images. Other functions of PACS also include visualising and manipulating patient’s images for an accurate diagnosis. Without the basic knowledge of PACS, users would face technical challenges leading to a delay in medical care delivery. Starting PACS training with healthcare students would help to acquaint them with the system and serve as a tool to supplement their learning. Hence, the aim of this systematic review is to evaluate the impact of implementing PACS training on trainees. Previous studies were included based on the keywords generated for the search strategy. Our exclusion criteria consisted of articles published before 2000, those not related to PACS, and conference abstracts. Scientific databases such as PubMed, Cinahl, Cochrane, Web of Science, Embase, Medline (Ovid) were used. After reviewing the studies based on these criteria, 21 studies were included in this review and six themes were generated. These themes included ‘Self-efficacy’, ‘Skills of Inquiry’, ‘Interest and Motivation’, ‘Application to clinical practice’, ‘Content and Process knowledge’ and ‘Utility of PACS’. The results reported an increase in trainees’ self-confidence when using PACS. Trainees felt more ready for their future practice and clinicals. Studies showed that trainees were able to develop critical thinking skills and helped to increase their interest and motivation in radiology. Trainees learnt new clinical and imaging knowledge from PACS training and found it useful for studying radiology, understanding anatomy, and learning indications for imaging studies. The PACS training also provided trainees the perspective of a practitioner and the image manipulation tools in PACS aided them in visualising anatomy and understanding difficult materials effectively. Hence, the consensus reached based on the results is that implementing PACS training has a positive impact on trainees.