Monash Health’s Diagnostic Imaging upgrade delivers direct benefits to cancer patients

Dr Jason Bradley operates Monash Health's new PET scanner

Dr Jason Bradley operates Monash Health’s new PET scanner

Upgrades to Monash Health’s Diagnostic Imaging department at Moorabbin are delivering direct benefits to cancer patients including shorter wait times, faster and more accurate scans and lower radiation dose.

The rejuvenation of the Diagnostic Imaging department was initiated by a $16.2 million grant from the Andrew’s Labour government in July 2015, to expand medical imaging and outpatient services at Moorabbin Hospital.

The opening of a new Siemens Biograph mCT Flow PET/CT Scanner in May 2017, will ensure that patients now wait less than one week for their scan, compared to 1-2 weeks previously. Capacity of the PET/CT centre is expected to increase significantly from the 3510 scans performed in 2016.

Other features of the new PET scanner combine to produce improved image quality, ensuring greater accuracy in localising disease. The ability to perform high quality scans with lower radiation dose to patients is particularly important for paediatric patients from the Monash Children’s Hospital.

Margaret Hazler was the first patient to be scanned in the new PET scanner.  For Margaret, the faster scanning time made possible with the new technology means less time to have her arthritic shoulders above her head. Patient comfort is also greatly improved for those who suffer from claustrophobia as the new camera boasts a wider bore.

“The privacy of the new facilities is great” said Margaret. “It helped me to just switch off and relax”.

“There is not an area within the diagnostic imaging department that won’t be touched by the re-development. All the facilities are renewed” said Mr Jason Bradley, Charge Technologist, Nuclear Medicine and PET, Monash Health, Monash Imaging Moorabbin.

“As well as the new PET facility, there is increased Ultrasound capacity, a Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) machine has been installed and also improved nursing facilities which include a bigger out-patient day ward space” he said.

“MRI at Moorabbin is a big thing for our MDT patients. Head and Neck and Gynaecology Oncology and Urology units will be some of the biggest beneficiaries of the new modality” said Mr Bradley.

“This investment in Monash Diagnostic Imaging will help us to meet the needs of our growing patient population and contribute to streamlining the patient journey from referral to diagnosis to treatment, in alignment with the Optimal Care Pathways for cancer”, said Eva Segelov, Monash Health’s Director of Oncology and Acting Clinical Director of Southern Melbourne Integrated Cancer Service.

For more information, contact Mr Jason Bradley, Charge Technologist, Nuclear Medicine and PET, Monash Health Imaging Moorabbin, 9928-8897, Jason.Bradley@monashhealth.org.