Norfolk nuclear medicine unit plans lung imaging expansion following refurbishment

£2.5 million project to improve diagnostic capacity and patient experience at Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital has been completed with the refurbishment of the nuclear medicine service.

Work began at the hospital in January 2020 to reconfigure the department to increase the number of SPECT/CT scanners from one to three.

The gamma cameras help provide extra capacity and flexibility to ensure urgent and cancer scans are carried out in a more timely manner. In addition, new procedures and therapies can be performed.

Clinical scientist Matthew Gray said: “This investment makes a huge difference to our nuclear medicine service and for local patients, providing high quality imaging for a range of conditions. We are in the process of trying to expand our therapeutic portfolio to incorporate relatively recent theranostic radiopharmaceuticals that can provide diagnostic imaging and therapeutic action to target neuroendocrine and prostate cancers. The expansion of nuclear medicine will enable treatment and imaging to take place in Norfolk for more cancer cases, removing the need for these patients to travel long distances for treatment.

“The department has also purchased a machine that is capable of generating radioactive gas to perform lung ventilation studies with the intention of expanding the lung imaging service and improved diagnostic imaging for patients with suspected pulmonary embolism.”

Gray continued: “We are also looking to make inroads into establishing a 3D imaging head and neck melanoma service using SPECT/CT imaging.”

New imaging department artwork
Artwork by Norfolk artist Beverley Coraldean brightens the walls.

The refurbishment includes artwork by Norfolk artist Beverley Coraldean, which has been funded by the N&N Hospitals Charity. Head of grants Julie Cooper commented: “It is lovely to see Beverley’s wonderful artwork making the unit attractive and welcoming.

“The hospital’s charity provides the extras over and above what the trust can do with NHS funding, and we are always keen to fund improvements to the hospital environment to enhance patients’ experience.”

In addition, Norfolk cancer charity Big C provided a grant so that all three camera rooms could be equipped with moving and static image LED ceiling panels and a built-in media unit for music and radio.

Director of charitable operations Dr Melanie Pascale said: “It is fantastic to see the new LED ceiling panels in place and operational. Big C aims to continually improve care for those locally who are affected by cancer and we were keen to fund this aspect of an innovative project to improve the patient experience.”

Lead picture: Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital ceo Sam Higginson and radiology project delivery manager Jill Goulding open the refurbished nuclear medicine department. Below: artwork by Norfolk artist Beverley Coraldean brightens the walls.

Published on page 2 of the November 2021 issue of RAD Magazine.

You might also like

This website uses cookies to improve your experience. We'll assume you're ok with this, but you can opt-out if you wish. Accept Read more