New CT scanner unveiled at Orillia hospital

Scanner is the result of years of fundraising

News Release – from Orillia Soldiers’ Memorial Hospital

Orillia Soldiers’ Memorial Hospital unveiled the new state-of-the-art Computed Tomography (CT) scanner now up and running in the Hospital’s Diagnostic Imaging Department. The scanner is the result of years of community fundraising and replaces its 16-year-old predecessor.

The new machine uses less radiation to create clearer images of patients and, according to Dr. Noah Wortsman, Chief of Radiology at Soldiers’, it will save lives. “The new CT is faster and smarter,” he said. “It can see through objects that were previously impenetrable, as well as allow us to pick up subtle disease while it’s still early enough to intervene. CT scans save lives, and enhance our diagnostic toolkit to better care for our patients.”

CT scans work by using specialized computer software and rotating X-ray machines to create cross-sectional images of the body’s internal workings, providing doctors with accurate information to diagnose and develop treatment plans for their patients. They are especially useful in detecting and monitoring cancer, heart disease and lung and liver issues.

Shelley Johnson, a Soldiers’ nurse and former patient, shared her life-saving experience with a CT scan at the unveiling. When the main blood vessel in her heart tore open (referred to as an aortic dissection), she felt intense pain and pressure on her chest. A CT scan identified the issue and gave doctors the diagnosis they needed to adequately treat her. “I truly believe that I would not be alive today without the amazing team of medical professionals at Soldiers’ and a CT scan,” she expressed.

“The acquisition of the new CT is the result of tremendous fundraising efforts and the incredible generosity of our community,” said Mark Riczu, Executive Director of the OSMH Foundation. “Soldiers’ patients will now experience shorter wait times, scan times and receive more accurate results, more quickly because of the kindness of our donors, notably Soldiers’ Hospital Volunteers, Orillia Power and the City of Orillia.

The new scanner, to be named in honour of the Hospital’s volunteers, who helped spearhead its fundraising, brings Soldiers’ one step closer to having a more robust diagnostic imaging suite. The final step is a new Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) machine. The Hospital’s current machine is more than 14 years old and was only built to be used for 10-12 years. To make a donation towards a new MRI please visit osmhfoundation.ca/donate or call 705.325.6464.

Banner image: Orillia City Councillor Ted Emond (left) presents Dr. Noah Wortsman, Chief of Radiology at Soldiers’, with a certificate to mark the official opening of the Hospital’s new CT suite.