Siemens Ultrasound

Article Conference CoverageFrom Radiological Society of North America (RSNA)Chicago, Illinois, November 2000

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Roberta Speyer:  “This is Roberta Speyer, and I’m reporting for here at the RSNA meeting in Chicago in 2000.  It’s a very busy meeting and, as you can see, there’s a lot of activity going on.  I’m here at the Siemens booth and, as you all know, Siemens has been a corporate sponsor of Ultrasound for many years and given us a great deal of support in our community which we certainly appreciate very, very much.  Today I’m talking to Shawl Lobree and Joanne Santos, and they have a very exciting new initiative on the Internet that they’d like to share with the OBGYN.netters.  Why don’t you tell us a little bit about it, Joanne.

Joanne Santos:  “Roberta, thanks for the opportunity because our relationship with for three years as a corporate sponsor has really helped us realize the benefits and the advantages that we can bring to our customers and the medical community over the Internet.  With Siemens, we have taken over a woman’s health initiative and what we want to do is become the provider not only for equipment but education.  What we’ve been fortunate to do is be able to partner with and Shawl Lobree who had a website primarily focused on patients and patient information and through our sponsorship what we’ve done is we’ve brought in a professional side and content.”

Roberta Speyer:  “That’s wonderful, why don’t you tell us a little bit about how Imaginis started and what the support of Siemens has allowed you to do with it.”

Shawl Lobree:  “Imaginis started out primarily focusing on the area of breast health.  In the United States, thirty million mammograms are performed annually and Siemens is obviously very involved in the business of mammography and breast cancer screening and detection so our focus was on helping women understand the process of mammography and especially women that are faced with a indeterminate finding on an initial screening mammogram to help them understand the follow-up, what’s going on, and to allay some of their fears and anxieties.  As Joanne mentioned, our original focus was primarily on consumers.  Siemens is interested in continuing to reach their healthcare professionals that use their products as well so through the partnership with Siemens we’ve expanded Imaginis to include more information, more content, and more resources for healthcare professionals.  We’re very familiar with, it’s a premier women’s health website and it’s interesting there’s actually very little overlap between the efforts.  Our focus, as I mentioned, has primarily been on breast health and some other related women’s health issues like hormone therapy that’s very tightly tied to breast cancer and what not.  So our focus is very sharp and I think that’s one of the things that Siemens appreciated about the effort was that it really helps compliment their effort to extend their brand and their awareness in the women’s health market for breast care.”

Roberta Speyer:  “With breast care, you make a very poignant point, there is a lot of concern with the consumers and it really puts the physicians treating them in a difficult position with HRT and with the scare of 'will this increase breast cancer, do I need it, what’s the tradeoffs, and what are the options?'  So you’re covering some of these issues?”

Shawl Lobree:  “Absolutely, hormone therapy is an issue that many women face but the main concern is that it might increase the risk of breast cancer so it happens that a lot of our audience is interested in that.  Then of course an overlapping issue with hormone therapy is osteoporosis so we cover that in some detail but primarily our professional content has been geared towards people involved in women’s imaging and breast imaging.  We’re really just starting to get into the area and we know that you have a tremendous audience of faithful followers.”

Roberta Speyer:  “The physicians do come for the information at and the women do follow them but we also have just launched a breast health section on our website that we’ve been requested to have.  I certainly hope we’ll be able to incorporate some of the good content we have developed here at Siemens to give that education to our consumer base but without involving the physician, as you both well know, and going to the consumer without including their obstetrician and gynecologist who in many cases, especially in the United States, acts as the primary care physician.”

Shawl Lobree:  “He’s managing the process.”

Roberta Speyer:  “He truly is.  Tell me now a little bit about the website itself, what features there are there for consumers and physicians and how you’ve integrated them.”

Joanne Santos:  “I think we’ve done a wonderful job with the website; it’s very user friendly.  Some of the features that we’re really quite proud of because of the large depth of content that we have is that we have a very easy search function so whether you’re a physician, consumer, or patient you just type in whatever area that you’re interested in, and you get a list of three, four, or five different places on the website that there’s direct links to.  Another feature is the newsletter.”

Roberta Speyer:  “Tell us, does this newsletter go out every month?”

Joanne Santos:  “That’s correct, you can sign up online to a newsletter, and it’s automatically e-mailed to you.  What the newsletter contains is current news, articles of interest and, Shawl, correct me but you’re tailoring it to the consumer.”

Roberta Speyer:  “Should we let him correct you?”

Joanne Santos:  “Yes.”

Shawl Lobree:  “Quite frankly, the content is really developed in such a way that it can be of use to both the consumer and professionals.  The newsletter has a brief summary of current topics which links to full articles on the website which then points to the original journal articles or research so it’s really a format that we have both consumers or patients and their professionals subscribing to.”

Roberta Speyer:  “You also have the indexes to tie it back to the original papers?”

Shawl Lobree:  “Absolutely.”

Roberta Speyer:  “When you’re dealing with breast cancer, of course, I’ve had this in my own family, it’s a time when women are looking for information, in-depth information, and they’re looking for it fast and from a reliable source so I certainly think it’s commendable that Siemens has taken this initiative to help provide what will truly be reliable information to women who have this problem.”

Shawl Lobree:  “If I could make one addition, as you know, Roberta, the topic of women’s health is massive.  Of course, the topic of healthcare is voluminous; it’s probably the largest body of knowledge known to mankind.  Imaginis is a small company, and we really felt that we could do the best job of providing value to consumers and now professionals by having a specific focus, primarily, on breast cancer and breast health and then other areas of women’s health that are closely related.  I think that’s one of the things that Siemens resonated with is their goal is best practices integration, it’s a new theme and a new effort within Siemens.  I think what drew them to us as to was our focus and our depth of content, as you just mentioned.”

Roberta Speyer:  “Yes, and I certainly appreciate both of you taking the time out of your very busy schedules.  The Siemens booth is absolutely the busiest booth at the conference, I don’t know what you kids are giving away in there besides your wonderful products and good information but if I go over there, do I get a pony?”

Shawl Lobree:  “Absolutely.”

Joanne Santos:  “Thank you, Roberta.  We appreciate it.”

Roberta Speyer:  “Thank you.”

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