Patient services ‘future-proofed’ through AI-assisted CT partnership

University Hospital Crosshouse in Kilmarnock in south-west Scotland has installed two new AI-assisted CT scanners into its Medical Imaging Department 'to future-proof diagnostic imaging services for local and regional patients'.

The busy district general hospital serves the population of East and North Ayrshire. The ‘innovative’ Aquilion Prime SP CTs from Canon Medical Systems UK replaces ‘ageing’ eight-year-old scanners from an incumbent provider, and – the company says – will be instrumental in remobilising COVID-19 related waiting-list backlogs and wider pressures on imaging services.

Designed to increase clinical capacity, the CT scanners will help meet current imaging needs, and accelerate future development plans at the hospital. This will include providing an expanded range of procedures to diagnose clinical conditions earlier, without the need for patients to travel to another hospital up to an hour away.

Caroline Crosbie, CT & MRI superintendent at the hospital, said: “The Aquilion Prime SP CT scanners mean that we can start making our plans for an improved quality of diagnostic care for patients a reality. For example, to date, patients requiring gated or aortic CT scans would have been referred to NHS Greater Glasgow & Clyde, nearly an hour away. Offering closer-to-home cardiac imaging may help overcome some patient referral issues, such as health inequalities and anxiety. Future plans include providing high-quality CT brain perfusion scans on site as part of the Stroke Thrombectomy service. By having higher grade CT imaging functionality, we can deliver an improved standard of care, and a patient-centred approach to our local community.”

The CT scanners’ selection followed a full tender and market evaluation process. Canon Medical Systems UK was selected for its advanced technology and after-sales service provision. The Aquilion Prime SP CT scanner is powered by an Advanced intelligent Clear-IQ Engine (AiCE) using Deep-Learning reconstruction. Canon Medical Systems UK said: “It produces exceptionally detailed imaging for clinical interpretation at the lowest possible dose to patients.”

Transitioning to a completely new CT scanner and interface may seem daunting, but with the support of on-site applications training, our radiographers learned the operation of the system very quickly,” said Caroline Crosbie. “We also have access to the Canon Medical Imaging Academy to check any instant queries online, and our early experience of telephone after-care has proven to be quick and responsive. The relationship with Canon Medical UK has evolved into a good working relationship.”




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