CARTHAGE, N.Y. — Carthage Area Hospital has added a new bone-density machine to its medical-imaging department.
The hospital will use the machine to diagnose osteoporosis and assess a patient’s risk for developing fractures.
The facility on Sept. 28 held a ribbon-cutting event for the new machine, according to Sue Ward, the hospital’s medical-imaging manager.
“It’s been seven years since we had the bone-density machine … this is a great advancement and we’re glad to bring this back to this facility,” says Taylour Lynn Scanlin, marketing director at Carthage Area Hospital.
The previous machine “broke,” says Ward, and the hospital, at the time, didn’t replace it.
Scanlin joined Ward on a Sept. 28 phone interview with CNYBJ.
“A lot” of the hospital’s mammography patients pursue a bone-density screening “at the same time,” says Ward.
“They are menopausal women and they want to know their risk assessment for osteoporosis and calcium loss in their bones,” she adds.
Reason for purchase
Carthage Area Hospital noticed a decline in its mammography patients because, without the proper equipment, they had to travel to different facilities for different treatments, according to Ward.
For example, patients would travel to Samaritan Medical Center in Watertown — about a 25-minute drive away — for the procedures.
Ward contends the new machine purchase “saves patients” from driving all over the North Country to get the services they need.
“So they can just come right to Carthage, get their mammography, get their bone density, get their labs, or any other testing done in one spot,” she adds.
“The community was really requesting that [machine],” says Scanlin.
The machine also has the capability of offering pediatric imaging.
The bone-density machine cost $35,000. The Carthage Area Hospital Foundation raised $27,000 of that figure in its annual golf tournament held in late July, according to Scanlin.
“The hospital paid for the rest as approved by the board of directors and the administration,” she adds.
The medical-imaging department converted two small offices for one bone-density suite. The hospital’s plant-operations department “knocked down” a wall that separated the offices.
The new improvements won’t require any new hiring at the hospital, according to Scanlin.
The hospital started seeing patients for the bone-density screenings on Sept. 27, says Ward.
The new bone-density machine isn’t the only new advancement added to the department.
The medical-imaging department also purchased other new equipment and expanded its hours to accommodate the needs of the local community, according to an Aug. 30 news release posted on the hospital’s website.
“We also had a new installation of a GE Optima [XR]646. It’s a regular X-ray machine. That is a digital unit,” says Ward.
The machine “allows for better patient comfort,” especially for children and geriatric patients, and generates “faster scans,” the hospital said.
The department also expanded its ultrasound hours of operation to Saturdays by appointment.
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