Pathology Informatics Fellowship Program

Pathology Informatics Environment

The University of Pittsburgh Medical Center has a dynamic informatics environment in which academic research and development augment vendor-supplied systems to support patient care, teaching and biomedical research. In collaboration with UPMC Information Services, the Division of Pathology Informatics manages the Copath Anatomic Pathology Information System and the Sunquest Clinical Laboratory Information System. The Copath system supports anatomic pathology in 9 UPMC-affiliated hospitals, with two additional hospitals going live this year. On the Oakland campus, it includes an AIMS pathology image management system. The Sunquest system supports clinical laboratory operations at 8 UPMC-affiliated hospitals. These systems are interfaced with multiple UPMC enterprise information systems, including the MARS comprehensive clinical data repository and the Quest Joint Venture reference laboratory. The Division also maintains the Pathology Department Internet and intranet Web servers, which include more than 200 clinical case studies and support over 1 million file accesses per month.

The Division of Pathology Informatics participates in development partnerships with vendors, collaborative development with other UPMC units and independent research and development. The Division is a beta test partner with both Copath and Sunquest for evaluation of new features as they are added to those systems. Division faculty and fellows participate in design and development projects outside of the division, including the Pitt/UPMC Integrated Advanced Information Management System (IAIMS) project, the Cerner hospital information system project, and the Pitt/UPMC medical record display project (Chart Engine). In-house clinical development projects include building a tissue typing laboratory information system from the ground up in 1999, planning for a similar effort in special hematology/flow cytometry in the next year, development of a dedicated telepathology system to support transplant surgery in Palermo, Italy, and development of a Web-based telepathology system to support more general telepathology activity. Recently, the Division has begun to develop information management resources needed to support tissue banking at UPMC and national distribution of diagnostic pathology information.

In addition to its regular activities, the Division sponsors the premier national meeting in Pathology Informatics, "The Advancing Practice, Instruction and Innovation through Informatics (APIII)", held in Pittsburgh in October of each year. Pathology fellows typically make presentations at the meeting in addition to helping to manage the meeting, attending sessions and networking with international pathology informatics experts.