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Brazil currently spends over $80 million on PACS and integrated PACS systems, considering only the software involved. The overall penetration is increasing, although adoption varies significantly among geographical regions and by the size of institutions. While large-size hospitals and diagnostic centers are almost fully penetrated and are almost entirely in a replacement-only stage, ready for their second or even third-generation PACS solution, a good number of medium- and small-size healthcare institutions are still first-time purchasers. Between May and August 2017, Frost & Sullivan conducted primary research with 24 healthcare institutions, including hospitals and diagnostic centers, from different segments and sizes, spread in the various parts of Brazil. In-depth discussions were also conducted with all relevant PACS vendors in the Brazilian market, from multinational companies and established local players to new entrants. Our research found that only a little more than 15% of all PACS contracts across the country are already on a SaaS pay-per-use model. Although the market is mature enough to understand the benefits of this new model, legacy systems, cost of cloud storage, and concerns over data security are still issues that were highlighted by end-users interviewed for this study. However, the flexibility that this model provides, especially in terms of maintenance, dedicated local IT staff, and upfront investment needed will turn it into the new paradigm model in the medical image and information management systems industry. As a result, vendors will have to adjust their offer and delivery models, regardless of their niche focus.Brazil has been traditionally the biggest and most important market in Latin America (LATAM), setting the trends for the whole region. Leading market participants include Carestream, AGFA, GE, Phillips, and local companies such as Pixeon and MV. Our primary survey results indicate that the future market growth will still come from investments in new systems in the next five years, especially by medium- and small-size segments. This growth will be fueled by new business models offered notably by new local entrants that enable institutions under these segments to see value in the systems offered and the faster ROI. The current government initiative to promote 100% informatization in public hospitals and other public outpatient facilities, combined with the recent telehealth policy, makes the low-penetrated public system a potential market to be targeted. However, as the trend of adopting software-as-a-service (SaaS) model based on service level agreements (SLA) is still nascent in the public sector, providers willing to sell for public institutions may still need to also provide the hardware, aside from the software and consulting services. PACS is embedded in wider healthcare IT trends, such as patient engagement, multi-professional team collaboration. and cloud computing. In the future, growth opportunities in the imaging informatics space will have to consider these trends and how they affect the market dynamics and customers’ expectations: Enterprise PACS and VNA solutions will become the market standard, even for the small- and medium-size segments. Interoperability solutions to integrate different PACS and unified web-based PACS will progress from being a competitive advantage to a market standard. This is only a sample of insights that you can gain through our research.
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