The capital investment offers Summit Pacific a new CT scanner and better imaging results

ATOne of the best features of 21st century medicine is the ability to quickly, non-invasively diagnose problems with remarkable accuracy. Thanks to technologies such as computed tomography (CT) scanners, qualified medical personnel can see the essence of the problem and create an individual course of treatment for each patient. Summit Pacific Medical Center has launched a new CT scan to help those in need.

Summit Pacific Medical Center recently upgraded its CT scanner to help patients in need. Photo courtesy of Summit Pacific Medical Center

Imaging Manager Robin Johnson says the addition “supports our mission: in partnership with our community, we are passionate about advancing health for all people with a focus on quality, affordability and compassion.” Head of Diagnostic Imaging Dawnell “Nellie” Barnes agrees. “Also, many of our staff have worked with this machine in the past at other facilities and love how user- and patient-friendly it is.”

“Computed tomography means a computerized tomography scan that actually displays parts of the body in slices, like a piece of bread that you take off a loaf of bread and put it down to see the inside,” Barnes explains. “Like a computer image, you can also reconstruct the data to slice the body from front to back or side to side and at any angle in between.” Unlike traditional X-ray scanning, computer tomography allows you to obtain images of bones, tissues and blood vessels.

The selection of any major new medical equipment purchase requires time, research, due diligence and staff involvement. “We were very excited about the Canon Medical Prime 80 slice because of its low radiation dose, versatility and long life,” says Johnson.

doctors look at scans at Summit Pacifici
The new PC computer works faster and delivers a lower targeted radiation dose, allowing doctors to diagnose problems quickly. Photo courtesy of Summit Pacific Medical Center

After installation, the new desktop computer underwent additional training to ensure everyone was on the same page. “There are three stages to training certification,” says Barnes. “In the first phase, we were able to send two super users to the Canon Institute in California to study the machine inside and out. In the second phase, a Canon application specialist comes for a week to train the rest of the staff. The final phase takes place 6-8 weeks after the initial training to address any further questions that have arisen during this time. Despite this training, Canon is available 24/7 to answer any questions our technicians may have.”

But all this work benefits patients from day one. “Scanning is much faster and the radiation dose is much lower. For patients who require multiple CT scans, this will help with their cumulative radiation dose,” says Johnson. “Furthermore, this CT scanner has a wide bore – the opening through which the patient passes – 78cm versus 62cm, so patients who are potentially claustrophobic will benefit from this new machine. It’s also much more comfortable for patients with wide shoulders or waists.”

With a wider tube opening, the new device is also more comfortable for claustrophobic or nervous patients. Photo courtesy of Summit Pacific Medical Center

The process is also greatly accelerated, which helps nervous, claustrophobic or emergency patients. “The new machine will be able to complete a full rotation of the pipe in 0.35 seconds, whereas our old scanner could only scan in 0.5 seconds,” says Barnes. “On our old machine, a typical abdominal/pelvic exam (600 images) was processed in 5 minutes, the new scanner will reprocess the same exam in just under 1 minute, which is about 60 images per second. All of this allows us to get diagnoses faster, which is critical for trauma and stroke patients.”

Considering Summit Pacific provides approximately 500 CTs per month and 6,000 per year, the new machine will make it easier for everyone to attend. “The new machine replaced our old scanner,” Johnson explains. “We were also fortunate to redesign the room, adding new cabinets and turning the scanner at a slight angle for better patient care and monitoring.”

Such technologies revolutionized medical treatment. In cases such as when someone has suffered a stroke, quick detection can be the difference between life and death. Computed tomography machines of this caliber are a huge investment for Summit Pacific Medical Center that will help save lives and reduce stress.

a person lying on a CT scan with technicians standing on either side
With results in a fraction of the time, doctors can quickly and accurately formulate treatment plans. Photo courtesy of Summit Pacific Medical Center

Summit Pacific’s Diagnostic Imaging Division also provides a full range of diagnostic imaging services for routine outpatient examinations and accepts imaging orders from referring providers. Some exams are even available the next day. Technicians are available 24/7 to provide exceptional care with a wide range of services including:

  • CT
  • DEXA bone density
  • Body composition
  • X-rays
  • Ultrasound (next day availability)
  • Echocardiogram (available the next day)
  • Mammography
  • MRI

For more information, call 360-346-2243 or have your supplier place your order at 360-346-2156. Summit Pacific Medical Center on Facebook, YouTube and Instagram for the latest updates, new additions and services.

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