Sep 10, 2018
Bronx Assemblywoman Carmen Arroyo announced today an appropriation of $2.4 million from the New York State Assembly for state-of-the-art 3T Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) equipment for NYC Health + Hospitals/Lincoln in the Bronx. Expected to improve both diagnosis and patient experience, the new technology is anticipated to be installed in 2020.
“I am incredibly proud to have secured this grant for an essential need of NYC Health + Hospitals/Lincoln and the community,” stated Assemblywoman Arroyo. “By purchasing a new MRI machine, it improves the patient experience and brings efficiency to the institution. This helps treat more patients and produces better quality results. We faced many obstacles in securing this funding but the cooperation of our colleagues in government made it possible. This will show once again that when we invest in NYC Health + Hospitals/Lincoln, we invest in the community. This is our hospital, and I am thankful to have the opportunity to make a difference. I would like to thank my colleagues in government—Governor Andrew Cuomo, Senator Jose Serrano, and Assemblyman Marcos Crespo—NYC Health + Hospitals/Lincoln and their respective staffs for their cooperation in this process.”
“This appropriation is tremendously important to our community because of the power of the new technology,” said Milton Nuñez, chief executive officer of NYC Health + Hospitals/Lincoln. “Assemblywoman Arroyo is the ultimate advocate for our community, fighting to ensure that residents of the South Bronx have access to the highest-quality care, including state-of-the-art technology.”
“Today and always, Assemblywoman Carmen Arroyo shows us her deep compassion for Bronxites and all New Yorkers,” said Assemblyman Marcos A. Crespo. “The assemblywoman’s allocation for this new technology will save thousands of patients’ lives and keep countless families healthy and together. Thank you to all the doctors, nurses, technicians, and administrators who continually strive to improve patient care and experience.”
The 3T MRI diagnostic imaging uses a magnetic field to produce detailed images of the body’s internal organs and tissues, including three-dimensional images that can be viewed from several angles. The new machine will replace a weaker one that is nearing the end of its expected life. While most MRI scanners operate at a strength of 1.5 tesla—a tesla is a unit to measure magnetic field strength—and most open MRIs operate at less than that, the new 3T MRI will be twice as powerful, generating the highest-quality images available.
“The advantage of a high-field MRI is not only the increased clarity of image,” said Anita Soni, MD, chief medical officer of NYC Health + Hospitals/Lincoln. “It also enables the radiologist to more reliably identify and differentiate benign and potentially hazardous medical conditions, allowing for earlier diagnosis and treatment, which leads to more positive outcomes. The high-field strength 3T MRI has markedly improved ‘signal-to-noise’ ratio, which improves image quality, decreases scan time, or both.
Improved images will yield more details of ligaments, tendons, and bones for more accurate evaluation of injuries associated with trauma, sports injuries, and degenerative diseases of bones and joints. Diabetes-associated infections and joint damage will be easier to see and far more accurately evaluated. For neuroimaging, there is improved lesion detection in inflammatory cerebral diseases like multiple sclerosis, increased detection of small tumors throughout the body and brain, better detection of small and acute strokes, and improved imaging for brain hemorrhage in head trauma or stroke. High-quality vascular imaging can also improve angiogram studies to the point where invasive interventional catheter studies may not be needed in some cases.
The patient experience will also improve. The newer machine can decrease exam time by up to 80 percent. Faster scans eliminate the need for long breath holds during each imaging sequence, especially important for a pediatric patient. The new machine will also have a larger space for patients, reducing the sense of confinement, or possibility of claustrophobia. It can also more easily accommodate patients of various sizes, including pediatric patients. The new machine will also be much quieter than earlier models and offer a variety of audio and visual entertainment.“Our patients will love the new unit,” said Lillian Diaz, RN, chief nurse officer at NYC Health + Hospitals/Lincoln. “And improving the patient experience is important to us.”