There’s nifty piece of technology parked around the back of the University Hospital of Northern BC.
A mobile MRI trailer has been brought in while the hospital’s resident MRI machine is replaced.
“The UHNBC MRI replacement is about a $2.86 million project,” says Eryn Collins, a spokesperson for Northern Health. “This mobile MRI will be here for approximately 4 months while the decommissioning and replacement of the existing MRI takes place. Essentially, it’s in a transport truck trailer size mobile unit that can be located at a facility and take care of MRI imaging needs while an existing MRI is being replaced, which is quite an undertaking.”
Money for the replacement is coming from the Province – $1,716,000 – and the Fraser Fort George Regional Hospital District – $1,144,000.
Collins says the old machine was installed in 2003.
“The technology has advanced significantly since that time so this new MRI will give us some significantly enhanced capabilities in terms of diagnostic imaging. Terrace and Fort St. John are going to be getting new MRI units – that’s going to add some capacity in the Northern Health Region.”
An MRI is a valuable test for medical professionals that use a magnetic field and pulses of radio wave energy to make pictures of organs and structures inside the body. Muscles, ligaments, cartilage, and other joint structures are often best seen with an MRI. In many cases MRI gives information about structures in the body that cannot be seen as well with an X-ray, ultrasound, or CT scan.
Northern Health’s 10-year medical imaging plan to help improve access to medical imaging technology in northern B.C. also includes the implementation of the Provincial Breast Health Strategy, which has recently seen state-of-the-art digital mammography units installed at hospitals in Quesnel, Dawson Creek, Terrace and Prince Rupert.