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New CT scanner expected to arrive in Elliot Lake this December

New scanner expected to virtually eliminate ambulatory out-patient travel to Sudbury and Sault Ste. Marie for CT scans
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In a news release issued Thursday, Elliot Lake St. Joseph's General Hospital CEO Pierre Ozolins announced the new CT scanner will be delivered to the hospital in December.

"St. Joseph’s General Hospital Elliot Lake (SJGHEL) and St. Joseph’s Foundation are pleased to announce that we have received final Ministry of Health approval to award the construction contract for the Computerized Tomography (CT) scanner as well as place the order for our new Canon Aquilon Prime CT Scanner," he stated in the release. "Delivery of this life changing technology is slated for mid-December 2020. Deconstruction of the area slated to accommodate the new CT scanner in our Diagnostic Imaging Department has already begun and we are expecting service to the community to begin by mid-January."

"In keeping with the hospital’s 2016-2020 Strategic Plan, the St. Joseph’s General Hospital Elliot Lake (SJGHEL) Board of Trustees, medical staff, management team and community determined that the approval, purchase and implementation of a CT Scanner for the population of Elliot Lake and surrounding communities along the North Shore was a priority," Ozolins continued. "We are now in the exciting final stage of this project which will help to improve the health and wellness of our culturally diverse community.  We are committed to furthering our mission, to provide the highest quality of care, to increase access to the right care at the right time and to help ensure the principle of health equity – that our patients and families will receive the same quality and quantity of care as other Ontarians."

Overall, the CT scanner in Elliot Lake will:
    •    Improve patient care and provide a level of health equity with other Ontarians.
    •    Eliminate patient discomfort/anxiety and significantly reduce health risk and mortality during transport.
    •    Reduce the health risks associated with driving on the TransCanada Highway to patients, EMS staff and SJGHEL nursing staff.
    •    Significantly reduce costs for acute and emergent transportation from the SJGHEL.
    •    Virtually eliminate ambulatory out-patient travel to Sudbury and Sault Ste. Marie for CT scans which is a five to six hour round trip.
    •    Significantly improve EMS capacity and performance results in Elliot Lake and the surrounding area.
    •    Improve EMS capacity in Sudbury by reducing the number of return transports.
    •    Significantly reduce wait times and overload capacity at Health Sciences North (HSN) in Sudbury, which will subsequently improve services in Sudbury.
    •    Help retain physicians and significantly improve the probability of recruiting new physicians to Elliot Lake and the surrounding area, since the ability to CT Scan is considered a standard of practice in the rest of the Province of Ontario.  
    •    Provide access to modern state-of-the art diagnostic imaging which will help retain and attract retired residents to the community.
    •    Reduce C02 emissions by approximately 74 metric tons per year, based on Ambulance E-450 Super Duty Cutaway travelling 336 kms to Sudbury 400 trips per year for emergent CT scans. This is the equivalent of removing 15.7 mid-sized cars annually from the road. If all outpatient work is included in this assessment(equivalent to approximately 1800 trips), the C02 emissions reduction will drastically increase to 160.5 metric tons, the equivalent of removing at least 34 mid-sized vehicles annually from the road.

"St. Joseph’s General Hospital Elliot Lake and St. Joseph’s Foundation would like to thank Canon Medical System Canada, its many community partners and all those who donated financial resources to this effort," Ozolins concluded. "We will be acknowledging those efforts with a new donation wall."


About the Author: Brent Sleightholm

As a reporter, Brent has covered everything from amateur and professional sports, to politics, entertainment, police and courts, to human interest stories and government issues
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