$31-million C-Arm machine for Mandeville Regional

MANDEVILLE, Manchester — Orthopaedic services at the Mandeville Regional Hospital have been enhanced by an advanced medical imaging device worth $31.3 million, which was donated by the Culture, Health, Arts, Sports and Education (CHASE) Fund.

The device more commonly called a C-Arm machine, due to its shape, was handed over to the hospital on Thursday.

Orthopaedic consultant at the facility Dr Steve Mullings said the machine is primarily used for surgeries.

“This machine is not only vital to the department, in terms of diagnosis, but you can also… do real-time imagining… This machine has increased our efficiency and our proficiency, not only are we able to operate on more patients, but the variety [with] different surgical procedures… In the past we had to transfer patients to the Kingston Public Hospital and the Bustamante Hospital for Children because we didn’t have the equipment for some of these surgeries,” he explained.

He added that the C-Arm machine helps to reduce blood loss and surgical trauma, ultimately shortening the admission of patients.

“The patient spends a shorter time on the ward, so we are able to get them out. We have issues with bed space so we don’t want you holding up a bed when we can get you home right away,” he said.

He pointed out that some motorcyclists have been repeatedly hospitalised at the facility.

“They also benefit from this machine, so we fix them a lot quicker. Get them out quicker. They get back on the bike quicker and they come back to us with their second and third fractures a lot quicker. Believe me, we have repeat offenders on a regular basis,” he said.

Chief executive officer at the CHASE Fund Wilford “Billy” Heaven said the organisation is now executing projects that were shelved due to the novel coronavirus pandemic.

“The organisation [had] shifted focus as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic… You would have imagined that a lot of projects that we would have considered prior to [the pandemic] were not considered for support because we know as a national organisation [that] we had to respond to the exigencies of the time, which was support for COVID-19 initiatives,” he explained.

“We held on to this project [at Mandeville] and a similar one at the Bustamante Hospital for Children and together those two projects cost us $57 million,” Heaven added.

Chief executive officer at the Mandeville Regional Hospital Alwyn Miller commended the CHASE Fund for donating the C-Arm machine.

“They are no strangers to our region and institution, having assisted us on many occasions with major pieces of equipment and infrastructure to bolster the hospital’s ability to meet health-care needs of this region,” said Miller.

“We believe that this donation of this C-Arm is in recognition to the enormous demands for orthopaedic services within central Jamaica and the adjoining parishes,” he added.

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