New ultrasound machines have been delivered to Cunnamulla Hospital and the Mungindi Multipurpose Health Service to give local doctors improved emergency assessment tools.
South West Hospital and Health Service Executive Director of Medical Services Dr Chris Buck says the ultrasounds at Cunnamulla and Mungindi were the first outside of Roma, Charleville and St George hospitals.
“We plan to install similar ultrasounds in other smaller facilities in the South West that have doctors on site but Cunnamulla and Mungindi are the first cabs of the rank and will be used as pilots.’’
“We will be evaluating their use in those two centres before looking at further installations.’’
Dr Buck says the $60,000 machines would be used by local doctors in emergency cases to gauge the extent of injuries and other trauma to a patient with the information used to determine if patient can continue to be treated locally.
Dr Buck said using ultrasound equipment for emergency assessment was not the same as using it for detailed diagnostic purposes, such as ultrasounds to investigate organ or tissue functions.
“These are more specialised functions that are the preserve of trained sonographers and specialist radiologists but certainly the machines can also be used by doctors for quick assessments.’’
“We are also able to upload imagery from them electronically to send to diagnostic specialists at a larger facility within the South West or further afield for further interpretation and analysis that can then be fed back to the treating doctor on-site.”
Mungindi MPHS Medical Superintendent Dr John Lancashire says the and his staff appreciated the investment made by the South West HHS Board in Mungindi with the purchase of the new machine.
“It also has built-in capacity to deliver broader applications for patient care in the future.”
Cunnamulla Hospital Director of Nursing Tracey-Lee Maher says the new ultrasound would help improve the access to and quality of health care for clients in Cunnamulla.
“In Cunnamulla, it allows for use in virtually any location where medical care can be delivered.’’