PC Health Services gaining new CT scanner

By Brooke Pankonin
Grant Tribune Sentinel

    Patients at Perkins County Health Services will soon benefit from a new CT scanner with the latest technology.
    The purchase was made possible through a $400,000 grant from The Leona M. and Harry B. Helmsley Charitable Trust’s Rural Healthcare Program.  
    The 128-splice CT (computed tomography) scanner will allow for faster scans that produce high-quality images, allowing medical staff to quickly determine patients’ health status and course of treatment.
    PCHS Foundation Administrator Adair Reese, who applied for the grant, explained three of the major benefits the scanner provides.
    • Lowest radiation exposure—CT scans require radiation to produce images. Generally, one chest CT is equivalent to 700 chest x-rays. The new scanner has the capability to reduce radiation exposure up to 60 percent compared to traditional CT scanners.
    A new Medicare policy went into effect Jan. 1, 2016 that reduced reimbursement for certain studies on CT scanners that do not meet specific radiation dose requirements.
    • Highest resolution—Anomalies the size of a grain of sand are detectable with the scanner.
­    • Greater comfort­— Some CT scans require patients to hold their breath. The new scanner only requires 3-4 second breath holds. PCHS’s current 16-splice scanner requires a 20-40 breath hold. Any movement during the scan can blur the images, compromising the quality.
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