CT Scan machine up and running at MCMH
August 16, 2011
CT Scan machine up and running at MCMH

Officials in the Ministry of Health, in particular those affiliated with the Milton Cato Memorial Hospital, achieved another milestone earlier this week in the delivery of healthcare.{{more}}

On Sunday, August 14, Sion Hill resident Maria Ryan became the first person to have the hospital’s Computerized Tomography (CT) Scan machine used to assist with her diagnosis.

The machine was subsequently commissioned the following day, Monday, August 15.

The middle-aged woman underwent a successful scan of the brain on the General Electric Bright speed machine, which is the first of many procedures that officials believe will keep the radiology personnel at the hospital very occupied.

Speaking at a media briefing yesterday afternoon, Minister of Health, Wellness and the Environment Cecil Mckie said that the commissioning of the machine is a proud moment for the hospital, its staff and Vincentians at home and abroad.

“We have been waiting a long time for this machine to be commissioned.”

“The ultimate objective of use of this machine is to improve the delivery of health care of St. Vincent and the Grenadines, and this machine, as the health care professionals will tell you, is just another run-of-the-mill service of health care; but without it, we have a major challenge. The data will show that, each year, we have to send 300 to 400 Vincentians to our neighboring countries to obtain the service that this machine can offer.”

The minister, surrounded by smiling officials and staff, along with persons who were instrumental in the acquisition and installation of the machine, valued more than 1.3 million dollars, noted that CT Scanner will impact significantly on the pockets of individuals, as well as the health bill of St. Vincent and the Grenadines.

He said that the rate schedule, which will determine how much a user of the service will have to pay, will be announced shortly.

Meanwhile, Consultant Radiologist Dr. Rosalind Ambrose said that care and attention must be taken in the scheduling and prudent use of the machine, which she described as a ‘big ticket item’.

“For the Department of Radiology, it must be organized in such a way, where the workflow is managed in an efficient way and secondly the physicians will need to refer the appropriate patients for CT.”

“I know from my experience at the Imaging Center, when you start CT service, the people who walk in the door and say ‘I have a headache, I want a head scan;’ it does not work like that. The appropriate clinical indications must be there for someone to have a CT scan….

We are proud that the hospital is able to make it the responsibility of providing this service to the public… it is not a toy; it is an extremely expensive machine and we shall do our best to have it run its course and work efficiently. On behalf of the staff of the radiology department of the hospital, we sincerely thank the government for providing this service to the people of St. Vincent and the Grenadines.”

Other persons addressing the commissioning were the Executive Director of the National Insurance Services Reginald Thomas, and Hospital Administrator Cuthbert Knights.