The Lister upgrades MRI after months of preparation

The Lister Hospital in Chelsea, part of the HCA Healthcare UK group, is continuing to invest in the latest imaging equipment. With its existing MRI system due for refurbishment, the ideal opportunity arose to provide patients with a new experience.

Following preparation over a number of months, the imaging team led by Theresa Doherty set about moving from the main hospital to a static Fairford Medical system located in the car park.

The move to the mobile unit presented a learning curve and a new experience for MRI superintendent Debbie Boocock and her team, who were pleasantly surprised by how quickly they adapted to working in a smaller environment. Setting up the mobile unit required a multi-disciplinary approach and good communication between all involved.

Safety was paramount and risk assessments were drafted from scratch to ensure safe working practices for all patients and staff. The main challenge was to ensure that staff could efficiently perform emergency procedures. A resuscitation simulation with the resus leads helped highlight areas of concern and action plans to tackle them were produced.

Debbie Boocock
MRI superintendent Debbie Boocock with the Magnetom Avanto Fit BioMatrix system from Siemens Healthineers.

In the main department, refurbishment of the MRI suite and upgrade of the scanner was underway. The scanner was upgraded to a Siemens Healthineers Magnetom Avanto Fit BioMatrix system with XA50 software. The new software is the state-of-the-art from Siemens, the only one in the HCA Healthcare UK scanner family, and said to be one of three in the UK.

Despite considerable planning, several challenges arose. For example, the quench pipe needed replacing which led to essential corridors being blocked and the medical gases needed to be shut off, affecting other departments. Each challenge was tackled with the support of the imaging manager who wrote the contingency plans to ensure hospital procedures could go ahead despite disruption.

On using the new MRI system Boocock said: “I feel this experience has taught me to be more resilient and better at adapting to challenges. The new MRI department has been well received.”

Lead picture: Fairford Medical provided the mobile unit for the interim period.

Published on page 3 of the October 2022 issue of RAD Magazine.

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