SAINT JOHN, N.B. – The Saint John Regional Hospital Foundation has launched a campaign to fundraise and donate $1.5 million dollars toward the $4 million purchase of Atlantic Canada’s first hospital-based 3T MRI scanner. The purchase of the scanner is a result of a collaborative agreement between the Province of New Brunswick, Horizon Health Network and the Saint John Regional Hospital Foundation.
“The advanced clarity the 3T scanner provides will allow us to see abnormalities in better detail, allowing us to detect cancers earlier and plan their management more accurately,” said Dr. John Allan (pictured), Acting Clinical Head of Diagnostic Imaging at the Saint John Regional Hospital.
“The benefits in neurology and neurosurgery are particularly exciting, since our hospital sees about half of the province’s disorders of the nervous system. I am very proud to be able to provide our community and province with this cutting-edge care.”
With this new technology in place, the region will also be in a better position to attract and retain the world’s top medical talent. “The 3T scanner will provide us with a variety of clinical benefits, especially in oncology, neurology and cardiology,” said Dr. Allan.
Once the scanner is installed, the Saint John Regional Hospital will be home to one of only a few hospital-based 1.5T and 3T MRI scanner pairings in Canada. “The installation of the 3T MRI will put the Saint John Regional Hospital in a position to deliver world-class healthcare to all New Brunswickers requiring access to MRI technology,” said Jeff McAloon, President and CEO of the Saint John Regional Hospital Foundation.
“This kind of investment and innovation at our hospital is what the Saint John Regional Hospital Foundation is all about. Everything we do at the Foundation is about ensuring that the healthcare we provide at the Saint John Regional Hospital continues to get better and better – for all New Brunswickers.”
The 3T MRI scanner has the ability to capture more detailed images, quicker than ever before.
“We will be able to identify diseases sooner and develop more precise treatment plans. It will also mean shorter wait times and more comfortable procedures for MRI patients. This is a huge step forward for our province. A heartfelt thank you goes out to all our current donors, as well as those who will get behind this fundraising effort in the coming months,” said Patrick Oland, Chair of the Saint John Regional Hospital Foundation’s board of directors.
Thanks to software currently in place, radiologists from across the province will be able to read images created by the 3T scanner – all New Brunswickers will benefit from the new technology. About 60 percent of the medical research done at Horizon Health Network takes place at the Saint John Regional Hospital.
Shelley Cohen-Thorley is living proof of how MRI technology benefits neurosurgery. She told the story of how doctors at the Saint John Regional Hospital used MRI technology to produce detailed scans of her brain tissue, which helped guide life-saving treatment after she suffered a stroke in 2011.
“I remember one doctor wishing we had a higher level of MRI machine to help pinpoint what was happening in my brain. A 3T MRI scanner will be a blessing,” Cohen-Thorley said. The Foundation’s fundraising campaign features first-hand accounts from Shelley Cohen-Thorley and two other campaign heroes. These generous New Brunswick patients have agreed to share their personal experiences in the hope that it will help their fellow community members appreciate the importance of MRI technology.
The Saint John Regional Hospital Foundation raises funds to support leading-edge technology and research at the Saint John Regional Hospital, the largest healthcare centre in the province – providing world-class care for all New Brunswickers. Since 1980, the Foundation has raised more than $75 million, thanks to the generosity of more than 50,000 donors. Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) is a safe, painless and non-invasive medical imaging technique used to visualize structures inside the human body, without the use of X-rays or other radiation.