Image is everything for Penticton hospital

South Okanagan Similkameen Medical Foundation is officially launching an equipment campaign on June 20 .

The South Okanagan Similkameen Medical Foundation is officially launching an equipment campaign on June 20 for the Imaging Department at Penticton Regional Hospital (PRH).

Brochures for the campaign will be in every mailbox this week.

The goal is to raise $1.5 million to change the three X-Ray rooms along with a portable machine used for the Emergency Department from outdated X-Ray cassette equipment into state of the art X-Ray Digital Radiography. Used on practically every part of the body and on patients of all ages, whether diagnosing a trauma injury, a chest infection or a cancer, X-Ray equipment is the most widely used diagnostic device recommended by doctors. In fact, more than 40,000 patients had X-Rays from all over the region and that number is a four per cent increase from the year before.

“While X-Ray equipment is available in several of the communities served by PRH, many patients require further treatment and additional X-Rays are required. Providing the digital radiography will be a huge improvement for the patients”, said South Okanagan Similkameen Medical Foundation chair, Jane Drapeau.

Digital Radiography is a form of X-Ray imaging where digital X-Ray sensors are used instead of the traditional cassettes. Similar to a digital camera, this technology uses a digital image capturing device. This gives the advantage of an immediate image preview and the elimination of costly time intensive cassette processing steps.

Digital has the ability to apply special image processing techniques that enhance overall display of the image and is fast, with the least amount of radiation.

The campaign, called Image is Everything will be chaired by long time board member Mark Ziebarth.

“X-Ray digital radiography provides increased image quality, reduced radiation and allows for faster, more efficient diagnosis of diseases and injuries,” said Ziebarth.

When asked about the future hospital Patient Care Tower expansion, Ziebarth explained, “this won’t affect the future expansion project, all of the new X-Ray equipment will stay in its current location at PRH and be used for many years to come.”

The South Okanagan Similkameen Medical Foundation’s executive director, Janice Perrino said, “because of the urgent need to replace this equipment, we will begin construction in the fall on one room and hopefully with more funds raised over the Christmas season and through the winter, the hospital will be able to complete the other two rooms and portable machine in the spring of 2014”.

The public is invited to attend the Image is Everything campaign launch on June 20 from 4 p.m. to 5:30 p.m. at the South entrance of Penticton Regional Hospital. Join them for cake, coffee and tours of the department along with a display of the Portable machine they hope to purchase.

For more information and to make donations, contact the SOS Medical Foundation office at 250 492 9027 or on the website at sosmedicalfoundation.com.