Niagara Health System has set up a temporary, mobile CT unit in the front parking lot at the Greater Niagara General Site while renovations take place inside the hospital for a new state-of-the-art 128-slice CT scanner, the Siemens Edge, that will be the first of its kind in Canada.
“We are extremely excited to bring the latest CT technology to the Greater Niagara General Site,” says Bonnie Sipos, Regional Technical Director of Diagnostic Imaging. “There is a two-month renovation and installation period required to install the new unit. Having the mobile unit on site will dramatically reduce the need to transfer patients by ambulance or redirect them to another site for a CT exam during the transition period.”
The Diagnostic Imaging Department used a similar approach in 2009 for the CT scanner at Welland Site. A portable and self-contained trailer has been leased for the two-month period and is up and running outside the front entrance of Greater Niagara General. The temporary setup includes the CT machine, computer hardware and software that integrate with the hospital system, and a hydraulic lift for ambulance-type stretchers. A covered walkway connects the trailer to the front entrance of the hospital to protect patients from rain.
“Using a mobile CT allows us to continue to provide CT services on site for our emergency patients and inpatients,” says Sipos. “Our hours of operation will not change, however, we will not be able to see patients as quickly as we usually do due to the smaller space. To ensure all of our patients receive timely care, outpatient CT exams are being scheduled at the new St. Catharines Site during the transition. We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause our patients and family members.”
Diagnostic Imaging began doing CT scans in the mobile unit on August 1. Renovations in the permanent CT suite have also begun. The mobile CT will be on site until the beginning of October, when renovations will be complete and the new CT will be fully operational.
“We are extremely grateful to the Greater Niagara General Hospital Foundation and donors for their generous support of the fundraising campaign for the new CT unit,” says Sipos. “This is a significant healthcare investment in Niagara Falls, and we are confident our donors will continue to be supportive of this campaign and help us reach our $2-million goal.”
Rebecca Slavik, Communications Specialist,
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