Methodist Jennie Edmundson in Council Bluffs recently added a cutting-edge tool that hospital officials say will benefit patients during their fight against cancer.
In late July, the hospital’s imaging provider, Wisconsin-based Shared Medical Services, exchanged an analog PET/CT machine with a new, digital positron emission tomography/computer tomography (PET/CT) system. The state-of-the-art diagnostic tool, available for use July 27, didn’t cost the facility any additional money out of pocket, as it’s classified as an upgrade under the agreement with the medical supplier.
The older machine, obtained by Jennie Edmundson in 2014, was taken off site after being disconnected, according to Imaging Manager Sheri Holub.
The upgrade will serve as a major benefit to those being treated, Holub said.
“Methodist Jennie Edmundson Hospital is committed to providing patients with the best possible chance at survivorship,” she said. “This tool complements our outstanding health care and cancer treatment programs, and it will help patients achieve the best possible outcome in an environment they are comfortable in.”
The new equipment, says the information provided by the hospital says, cuts patients’ scan times in half to less than 15 minutes, has increased sensitivity – allowing the scan to detect smaller lesions faster – and uses smaller injections of radioactive tracer which reduces overall radiation exposure.
“We’re excited and honored to be able to offer our patients the most advanced PET/CT imaging available – and close to home,” said David Burd, senior vice president of operations, through a provided statement. “This is another way we’re living out our commitment to providing the best care to the people of southwest Iowa.”
When new equipment is implemented at the facility, Holub said it’s common practice for repeat patients using the technology to answer a few survey questions highlighting their overall experience.
Although the new PET/CT machine is still a relatively new arrival, Holub said she has been hearing good things.
“So far, all of the response has been positive,” Holub said. “The resting rooms after the injections are more private, the scanner itself is a little smaller and less intimidating, so it’s not as claustrophobic. And with the scan time being reduced, patients are definitely happy that they don’t have to hold still for as long.”
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