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BWH recently completed a major modernization of its MRI fleet throughout the hospital. After months of construction and installation of new MRI systems, all imaging facilities are now online and operating at full capacity.
“A lot of planning and effort went into making sure that we acquired top-of-the-line scanners to enhance our MRI imaging capabilities and ensure the comfort and privacy of every patient who has their procedure here,” said Steven Seltzer, MD, chairman of Radiology. “With the completion of this project, we have achieved that balance and are thrilled to have all of our MRI facilities back at full capacity.”
The project kicked off 10 months ago with the Lee Bell Breast Center and the Shapiro Cardiovascular Center each creating space for high field MRI systems operating at 3.0 Tesla field strength.
Renovations to L1 MRI followed. There, the department installed two 3.0 Tesla systems, one from GE and the other from Siemens, complementing the 1.5 Tesla GE system already in place. The Siemens magnet, with a larger bore than most other systems, can accommodate patients who weigh up to 550 pounds.
In addition to upgrades in MRI technology, the modernization project included significant changes to the L1 facilities, creating a more comfortable space for patients. The hallways were widened to allow for patients to move easily from the reception area to the MRI scanners, and the new reception desk facilitates more efficient patient scheduling and increased privacy.
“The layout of L1 MRI had seen only minor renovations since it first opened in the 1980s,” said Stu Hooton, business administrator for L1 MRI. “The suite now reflects how a state-of-the-art MRI facility operates on a day-to-day basis.”
During this ambitious modernization project, some patients were redirected to other BWH MRI facilities, including 850 Boylston St., the Advanced MRI Center at 221 Longwood Ave., and the Lee Bell Breast Center. Renovations were completed in October, and L1 MRI is back at full capacity with three scanners serving patients. For outpatients, L1 MRI is open seven days a week, from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m., and often offers same-day appointments. It is open and staffed 24 hours a day for inpatient and emergency cases.