MRI scanner craned away as hospital embarks on £8 million replacement scheme
- Credit: NEIL DIDSBURY
An MRI scanner that is more than 13 years old has been craned out of Cromer Hospital as part of one of the biggest equipment replacement programmes for Norfolk’s hospitals in recent years.
The Norfolk and Norwich Hospitals (NNUH) NHS Foundation Trust’s £8 million project to replace imaging equipment will also see the change-out of three other MRI scanners and a CT scanner at the N&N.
The replacement means patients in north Norfolk who need an MRI scan will now have to go to Norwich until a new machine in installed and commission at Cromer, which is expected to take around three months.
Dr Rayhaan Rahaman, NNUH’s chief of imaging, said: “This significant investment will make a huge difference to patient care with improved imaging and reliability, which will also benefit the trust with research and training.
“Having the latest state-of-the-art scanners will help the trust to recruit and train future radiographers who provide a vital role to help diagnose cancer and a host of other conditions.”
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Work began last week with the reconfiguration of the N&N’s radiology department to allow for the integration of the new CT scanner, which will replace an existing machine there. The trust said this would boost capacity in the hospital’s emergency department and inpatient areas.
The replacement project is being partly funded by a government ‘Aged Assets’ scheme which was announced last year, as well as ‘Adapt and Adopt’ Covid-19 funding.
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The other machines being replaced are also over 13 years old. The whole project is due to take around 10 months, and the trust said the new equipment would lead to improved quality of imaging, patient safety improvements, efficiencies, and improved patient and staff experience.
If they are needed, additional mobile scanners will be used at NNUH to maintain scanning capacity during the changeover.
MRI (magnetic resonance imaging) scanners can be used to examine almost any part of the body, including the brain and spinal chord to internal organs and bones and joints.
CT scanners use x-rays to create detailed images of inside the body, and can be used to diagnose a number of conditions including problems with blood flow and cancer.