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New MRI scanner for Daisy Hill Hospital

7th July 2023

A new MRI scanner has arrived on the Daisy Hill Hospital site.

The temporary scanner is located next to the modular CT on site. It will help to address MRI waiting times and reduce the need to transfer patients to other hospitals for diagnosis.

Daisy Hill Hospital offers diagnostic services, 24 hours a day, seven days a week, with the team completing a total of 82,466 investigations last year.

MRI (Magnetic Resonance Imaging Scanner) is used for the investigation of the entire body. With high quality images, it can detect the smallest abnormalities. It is especially useful in imaging the brain, spinal cord and cancers compared with other medical imaging techniques like CT (Computed Tomography) or X-Ray and does not use ionizing radiation. It is increasingly used in diagnosis, characterisation, staging and assessment of treatment response for cancer services and other specialties.

The Southern Trust has two MRI scanners, both at Craigavon, with inpatients from other hospitals and Daisy Hill ED requiring transfer for MRI investigations.

Speaking about this latest development in diagnostics for Daisy Hill, Cathrine Reid, Director of Director of Surgery and Clinical Services said:

“Approximately 20 patients are transferred from Daisy Hill to Craigavon Hospital each week by ambulance for MRI scans. Alongside the ongoing electrical upgrade, our longer term plan is to secure funding and develop a diagnostic suite for the hospital, including a permanent MRI scanner.

“Introduced as part of our recent stability plans to support inpatient medical services at Daisy Hill, the lease of the temporary MRI as an interim solution is welcome news for patients, staff and colleagues in the ambulance service. It will help us meet the growing demand for MRI scans, avoid the need for transferring patients where possible and free up much needed ambulance resources.

“We would like to thank all of our medical, diagnostics, planning and estates colleagues who have been working tirelessly over recent weeks to quickly source the MRI scanner and continue to show such dedication to improving services despite the continued financial and workforce challenges that we face right across health and social care. The team are now working hard on final installation works to get the scanner up and running and are looking forward to welcoming their first patients in the next few weeks.”

The scanner will be leased for an initial nine month period. This will be kept under review whilst a longer term solution is confirmed.