When Dr. Steve Tomlinson founded Chrissie Tomlinson Memorial Hospital (CTMH) in May 2000 it was always with the intention, vision and dream of bringing exceptional healthcare to the residents of the Cayman Islands. His intentions have been so successful that CTMH has grown to encompass three community clinics, one in Savannah and the other in West Bay and the Visiting Specialist Clinic in George Town. However, the private/public sector partnership between a private company called 3T Cayman and The Health Services Authority (HSA) may just demonstrate the essence of his dream for the country more vividly than he ever imagined.
While this private/public sector partnership doesn’t involve CTMH directly, Dr. Tomlinson is one of the investors in 3T Cayman and is committed to making the necessary investments required for the upgraded MRI equipment. He emphasized, “Along with the company shareholders, we realize that the investment in our Islands is important. We know that if we invest in state-of-the-art equipment, then the people of these islands can stay on island to have their tests done. No one likes to leave their family and loved ones to have tests or diagnosis like that. We want them to be with their loved ones, here at home.” Dr. Tomlinson has a proven track record for being committed to purchasing the latest technology for CTMH and Cayman Islands Imaging (CII), the radiology company associated with CTMH. In 2012, CII became the first in the Caribbean to become a Pink Ribbon Facility, a honoured designation given by the Hologic Corporation, when they installed their 3D pain free mammogram equipment. Dr. Yaron Rado, Chief Radiologist at CTMH, 3T Cayman and CII explained, “We have decided to take this opportunity to upgrade our ultrasound equipment and also add fluoroscopy equipment at CII. These continued investments further enhance our offerings and establish our private/public sector partnership. This equipment will ensure that any test required can be done without delay.”
Fluoroscopy is a type of medical imaging that shows a continuous X-ray image on a monitor, much like an X-ray movie. During a fluoroscopy procedure, an X-ray beam is passed through the body. The image is transmitted to a monitor so the movement of a body part or of an instrument or contrast agent through the body can be seen in detail. Fluoroscopy procedures are performed to help diagnose disease, or to guide physicians during certain treatment procedures. Some fluoroscopy procedures may be performed as outpatient procedures while the patient is awake – for example, upper gastrointestinal series to examine the esophagus, stomach and small intestine, or a barium enema to examine the colon.
The private/public sector partnership features nearly $5 million in technology upgraded MRI and hospital fit-out and is the most advanced in the English speaking Caribbean. 3T Cayman recently hosted a Continuing Medical Education (CME) event for local doctors and professionals in the healthcare industry at Grand Old House. International speakers from GE Healthcare and 3T Cayman’s locally residing radiologist explained the extreme differences in the current 1.5T Machine and the new 3T Machine. In addition to the exceptional quality of imaging, patient comfort is top of the list with the new 3T machine. It features a wider carriage meaning patients will be less claustrophobic without compromising quality. The patient suite has IPad/IPhone compatibility ports allowing patients to listen to their favourite music and even view their favourite photos while being scanned.
Physicians Win Too!
Benefits of a 3 Tesla machine over previous models of MRI are complex and multiple. They produce images at a higher resolution allowing for more detailed imaging and more accurate diagnosis. The equipment also has available more advanced technology including hardware add-ons and software applications. All of these additional elements can increase the effectiveness of the equipment to varying levels. Doctors agree that a 3T MRI is the gold standard in neuro-imaging. A 3T machine can assist a neurologist in a variety of conditions, such as brain aneurysm, multiple sclerosis and epilepsy. While they are widely known for their neurological scans, they scan the rest of the body as well, and a 3T MRI will scan in 3D and will be efficient and fast, 2 to 3 times faster than older machines.
In fact, doctors agree that it is about as good as you can get when it comes to MRI scanners.
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