5 Strategic Methods To Deal With Hospital Budget Cuts Without Downsizing Services

5 Strategic Methods To Deal With Hospital Budget Cuts Without Downsizing Services

When the economy is booming, hospitals and healthcare organizations can struggle to meet demand. But when times are tight, it’s even more difficult to keep up with rising costs—especially when trying to minimize your facility’s downsizing efforts. 

 

Let us help you find the perfect solution for your mobile medical imaging needs. Call us today at (844) 949-1664 or email us at info@catalinaimaging.com to learn how we can help your practice.

 

5 Strategic Methods To Deal With Hospital Budget Cuts Without Downsizing Services

Many facilities are forced to make cuts to remain profitable and competitive. However, that doesn’t mean there aren’t ways you can save money without sacrificing services or causing harm to your patient’s well-being. Here are five strategies for dealing with budget cuts without downsizing services.

 

Revise current budget allocations

You should start by looking at where you’re spending your money. Are there certain areas that are getting more funds than they should? Is there an area that has seen a decline in funds but is still as important as before?

 

Looking at previous years’ budgets alongside the current proposed budget can determine the best financial decision. For example, suppose last year there were only two nurses for the entire hospital, and now this year, there are four nurses for the same number of patients. In that case, one thing is clear: Your allocation has shifted from paying for employee salaries to other items like rent or utilities.

 

Obviously, cutting back on employee salaries would not be ideal. However, what matters most is making sure services remain available—with fewer staff members available at any given time during peak hours when demand is highest, and resources are scarce.

 

Negotiate with vendors

Your hospital could benefit from a deeper look at the prices of its most common purchases and services. Negotiating can lead to discounts, incentives, and other perks to help keep your budget in check.

 

If you’re spending too much on medical supplies, consider switching to alternative suppliers offering lower prices on similar products or services.

 

There’s no reason to pay for manual processes like filing or copying documents in the digital age. Consider investing in software that automates these tasks, saving you both time and money while reducing the likelihood of human error.

 

Audit resources and software

In the first step, you should audit your software and IT infrastructure. It’s important to know what kind of technology is available to help maximize your hospital’s efficiency.

 

That also means that you should audit medical equipment and supplies. It may be time for replacement purchases if anything is out of date or nearing its expiration date.

 

Thirdly, it’s important to audit personnel. An employee who has been with the company for years may be better suited for a different task than one who just started two months ago. Evaluating each person’s abilities can ensure that everyone is put into roles where they can excel. 

 

Finally, space must be analyzed as well—areas such as beds and rooms need regular cleaning because germs spread quickly in hospitals! Ensuring that all of these things are up-to-date will help keep costs down while still providing excellent care for patients

 

Coordinate with other facilities

Many hospitals have multiple locations; some even serve as a region’s primary care provider. Take advantage of this if you’re an administrator responsible for more than one facility. 

 

By coordinating between these locations, you can easily eliminate duplicate services and use resources more efficiently. For example, share staff members or equipment between facilities when possible.

 

You may also outsource some services to other providers or vendors who specialize in those areas of expertise. You don’t have to handle every department from top to bottom (and pay for it). 

 

When choosing how much work to keep internal versus outsourcing or farming out entirely (which comes with its own set of risks), consider which skill sets are most critical for success at your organization. Then focus on those areas before considering additional outsourcing options like hiring contractors or freelancers over full-time employees if necessary.

 

Rent out equipment that you don’t often use

It’s a great way to make extra cash and get more out of the items. If you have any spare machines or tools, you can start renting them out to other hospitals. That will help your hospital earn money while also giving other hospitals access to better equipment than they might be able to afford.

 

There are many different types of equipment that can be rented out, but some examples include the following:

 

  • MRI machines
  • CT scanners
  • Operating room tables (OR)

 

Conclusion

With the right strategies in place, you can keep your hospital operating at capacity while saving money. There are plenty of ways to approach budget cuts and make them work for your facility. The key is being proactive and thinking outside the box!

 

If you’re looking for a mobile medical imaging solution that will help you feel supported and give you confidence in your diagnosis and treatment—then Catalina Imaging is here for you! For more information, contact us today at info@catalinaimaging.com or call us at (844) 949-1664!

Overweight Patients & CT Scans: Things To Consider

Overweight Patients & CT Scans: Things To Consider

As a medical practitioner, you know that education is important to help patients create the best health outcome. However, you also know that the implications of possible deficiencies in knowledge can have detrimental effects on your facility. 

 

We use state-of-the-art Siemens, GE, and Toshiba/Canon technology to provide you with the highest-quality solutions. Contact us today at info@catalinaimaging.com or call us at (844) 949-1664!

 

Overweight Patients & CT Scans: Things To Consider

“Obesity impacts medical imaging. The increases in weight and girth of the patient population are testing the current limits of imaging equipment. With the increasing prevalence of overweight and obese populations, more patients are encountering difficulties in obtaining diagnostic-quality images.”

Source: Impact of Obesity on Medical Imaging

 

So if a patient insists on being scanned with a full body CT, what advice would you give them? Here are some things to share with overweight patients.

 

Are CT scans safe for heavy patients?

Patients above their ideal weight may wonder if this imaging procedure is safe for them. You can give them a definite yes!

 

CT scans are considered one of the safest medical imaging tests available today. They help doctors diagnose tumors and other abnormalities in the body more accurately and quickly than different types of imaging tests like X-ray or MRI.

 

Most doctors may not always recommend having a full body scan because of how long they take and how much radiation they use up (which can accumulate over time). But they will allow their patients who weigh over 200 pounds to get one if necessary without hesitation.

 

How to know the weight limit of a CT Scanner?

The weight limit of a CT scanner is based on the patient’s weight. How much does it weigh? 

 

Well, that depends on the size of your machine and how big your patient is. Typically between 300 and 400 pounds (136 to 181kg), this number can vary greatly depending on your device and even your model.

 

For example, larger models may have higher weight limits than smaller ones because they hold more people at once while accommodating more heavy patients. But there are still plenty of smaller scanners with lower maximum capacities than others! 

 

And if all else fails, remember no matter what kind or size CT scan you need to perform today, experts trained in handling such situations should be done today. Be wary of seedy places with unscrupulous practices!

 

Does body mass index matter when it comes to CT scans?

A body mass index (BMI) is a measure of body fat based on height and weight. It is used to screen for weight categories that may lead to health problems, such as being underweight or overweight.

 

The more fat and muscle your patients have, the more radiation their body absorbs. So if they’re overweight or obese, that means more radiation for them and more for you to worry about.

 

If the patient is overweight (BMI>30), you may recommend that they get a lower dose of radiation during your CT scan than someone who is less heavy.

 

Are there any imaging alternatives that can be recommended?

If you have an overweight patient, there are a few things that you should consider before recommending a CT scan. First, it’s important to determine whether any alternative imaging methods can be recommended for the particular condition being studied.

 

You must also consider if the information obtained from a CT scan would be valuable to make a diagnosis. For example, if a chest X-ray or ultrasound is sufficient for you to get what you need to know, then you can request those tests instead.

 

Second, ask yourself why the doctor who requested it wants them to have this test done. It will help give you more clarity on whether it’s necessary. 

 

If there’s an emergency where time matters more than anything else (for example, if there’s suspicion of internal bleeding), then yes—it might be worth going for a CT scan even. 

 

However, it may mean exposing the patient to high radiation doses and may cause more harm if done repeatedly over long periods without breaks between sessions.

 

What are the risks of missing out on CT Scans for heavy patients?

In some cases, CT scans are the best way to diagnose certain conditions. These include cancer, tumors, blood clots, and infections like pneumonia.

 

They can also detect fractures of bones and blood clots in the brain. A CT scan is also used to look for blood clots in the lungs if the patient has a heart attack or stroke.

 

Weight Limits and CT Scans: Extra Considerations for Obese Patients

In conclusion, the main goal in heavy imaging patients is to minimize the risks associated with the procedure. Thus, knowing their weight and BMI (body mass index) is important before undergoing any X-ray or CT scan. Most of all, make sure that they clearly understand with their doctors and radiologists how they will handle any potential injuries that might occur due to this test. 

 

The next time you need a mobile scanner, contact Catalina Imaging at info@catalinaimaging.com or call us at (844) 949-1664. We’ll help you find the perfect solution for your imaging needs!

Why You Should Rent a GE CT Scanner

GE CT Scanner

GE CT scanners are among the most popular and sought-after in the market, and rightly so. General Electric creates high-quality and easy-to-use equipment that are easily serviceable. At Catalina Imaging, we have firsthand experience with the reliability and versatility of GE’s products. 

 

If your facility is experiencing some changes and you’re looking to rent a CT scanner, Catalina Imaging has got you covered. We’re a leading mobile CT scanner provider that offers a wide selection of mobile imaging solutions nationwide. Call us at (844) 949-1664 to learn more about our services.

 

In this blog, we’ll highlight some of the reasons why you should consider renting a GE CT scanner.

 

Familiar user interface

Radiologists and technologists are familiar with GE’s software and user interface

 

Although GE constantly updates its products, the company keeps the same interface in its system. And whenever there are changes to GE CT scanners, they are implemented gradually. This gives users enough time to adapt to the changes.

 

If your team is proficient with their equipment, they can become more productive and precise with their imaging. 

 

XR-29 compliant

Generally, GE CT scanners follow XR-29 standards, a set of guidelines issued by the National Electrical Manufacturers Association (NEMA). Using XR-29-compliant equipment means you won’t suffer a 15% Medicare reimbursement reduction.

 

The entire GE VCT 64-slice series is already compliant with XR-29. GE units that aren’t natively compliant can be easily upgraded to satisfy the requirements provided by NEMA. 

 

Service support and parts accessibility 

GE is known for its outstanding customer support. In addition, there has been an increase in GE CT equipment in the past few decades, which increased GE service engineers all over the world. 

 

Additionally, it’s easy to find GE parts no matter where you are. Whether you’re looking for tubes, detectors or other components, a large volume of parts are available in the second-hand market. 

 

If you’re renting a GE CT scanner, this ensures fast repair times and uninterrupted service since the units are easily serviceable.

 

Air-cooled system

You don’t need to worry about installing a chilling system for GE CT scanners. GE units are air-cooled and don’t require large reconstruction cabinets, unlike the scanners from other manufacturers. 

 

This means GE CT scanners will occupy less space in your facility, freeing room for other purposes. 

 

Reasons why facilities and hospitals rent CT scanners

There are various reasons why your medical facility may opt to rent a CT scanner.

  1. You’re looking to test the market
  2. You don’t have funds for a huge investment but have a steady operational budget
  3. Your CT suite is undergoing renovations
  4. You’re conducting a training
  5. Your existing CT scanners can’t keep up with your patients
  6. You have multiple but low-traffic sites

 

Renting a mobile scanner is an affordable way to equip your facility with CT without spending the upfront costs of buying a unit. 

 

Catalina Imaging (Why Choose Us?) is a premier mobile imaging solutions provider.  Beyond GE CT scanners, we also offer state-of-the-art equipment from Siemens and Canon/Toshiba. We offer our services nationwide from our California, Illinois, North Carolina and Minnesota facilities. 

 

To know more about our offerings, call us at (844) 949-1664 or fill out this form

 

How AI Detects Pancreatic Cancer: ML Helping CT

How AI Detects Pancreatic Cancer: ML Helping CT

Industry News! In the U.S., pancreatic cancer is expected to be the second leading cause of cancer death by 2030. 

Despite interventions caused by pancreatic cancer CT scans, managing this disease is difficult once the tumor has already grown. Unfortunately, pancreatic cancer has the distinction of having the lowest five-year survival rate among cancers.

CT scan for pancreatic cancer detection

Most medical professionals rely on CT scans to detect pancreatic cancer. However, this technology is 40% unreliable if the tumor is below two centimeters, since pancreatic cancer often lacks clear borders with the surrounding tissue. 

Because of this, patients only become aware of their condition once cancer has begun to spread. As a result, they miss the opportunity to treat the tumor during its initial stages. That’s why researchers are finding ways to improve the efficiency of CT scans for pancreatic cancer. 

If you’re looking for a CT scan provider for your hospital or medical facility, you can contact Catalina Imaging at (844) 949-1664. We’re a leading mobile CT scan company that offers Mobile Multi-Slice diagnostic imaging nationwide.

Detecting pancreatic cancers using AI

Recently, Taiwanese researchers have conducted a study that used deep learning (DL) to detect pancreatic cancer

DL is a type of artificial intelligence (AI) that teaches computers to recognize data patterns using a model inspired by the human brain. 

Previously, researchers demonstrated that DL could distinguish the pancreas with and without cancer. Yet, in that instance, the tool relied on human radiologists to identify the pancreas in the image. 

In this new study, the AI identified the pancreas on its own. This is a breakthrough since the pancreas is a relatively small organ that varies in size and is surrounded by other organs and structures.  

The study involved 546 pancreatic cancer patients and 733 control participants. During internal testing, the AI pancreatic cancer detection tool achieved 90% sensitivity and 96% specificity.

A validation study ensued with 1,473 participants. In this instance, the DL tool was rated 90% for sensitivity and 93% for specificity. Notably, the AI pancreatic cancer tool had a 75% sensitivity for tumors less than 2 centimeters big, a 15% improvement compared to CT’s sensitivity. 

Potentials of AI for pancreatic cancer detection

Senior research author Weichung Wang, Ph.D., said in a report

“The performance of the deep learning tool seemed on par with that of radiologists. Specifically, in this study, the sensitivity of the deep learning computer-aided detection tool for pancreatic cancer was comparable with that of radiologists in a tertiary referral center regardless of tumor size and stage.”

Dr. Wang, a professor at the National Taiwan University and the director of the university’s MeDA Lab, explained that DL offers a lot of potential in assisting clinicians. DL can help radiologists to increase the accuracy of CT scan pancreatic cancer detection

The Taiwan-based research team is planning further studies. They aim to use the AI pancreatic cancer detection tool in a more diverse setting.

Final word

When it comes to pancreatic cancer detection, CT scan is the best available technology in the market. AI will only make it more accurate, resulting in early tumor detection and better cancer management. 

If you’re looking for a mobile CT scan provider, Catalina Imaging has got you covered. We offer high-quality mobile imaging solutions using state-of-the-art equipment from brands such as Siemens, GE, and Toshiba/Canon.

Catalina Imaging has the experience and expertise to address your facility’s long- and short-term needs. Call us at (844) 949-1664 or email us at info@catalinaimaging.com to learn more about our services

2022 Health Trends: Healthcare Sector and Technology

Top Healthcare Trends in 2022 and Beyond

Technological advancement has grown exponentially in the past decade. The healthcare sector is one of the many businesses that technology has heavily disrupted.

Today, big and small companies are using it to cultivate their growth. For advanced technology and state-of-the-art medical imaging equipment, contact Catalina Imaging today.

In this blog, we’ll talk about five trends that are disrupting and will further disrupt healthcare in the future. Let’s begin.

5 Trends That Will Transform the Healthcare Industry

1. AI and machine learning

Thanks to its massive potential, AI is the most influential tech in the health sector. For instance, it can help healthcare teams accurately diagnose patients and suggest personalized treatments depending on several factors.

Moreover, machine learning is used on mobile apps to display relevant information for people suffering from certain illnesses. For example, patients can now check their symptoms and understand what’s ailing them. That’s without the need to visit a hospital physically.  

Healthily (Your.MD) is one such company using this tech. In 2020, the global self-care platform experienced a 350% user growth in the last 12 months.

AI can also significantly boost the expertise of clinicians. They call it augmented intelligence. It’s where AI acts as an assistant to the clinician to improve their medical knowledge. In short, AI enhances a clinician’s expertise rather than replacing them entirely.

2. Wearables as healthcare tools

Smartwatches and fitness trackers are healthcare trends that are only going to grow moving forward. Their evolution has allowed them to penetrate the medical industry through 24-hour monitoring, real-time measurements, and data gathering capabilities.

A recent example would be Apple collaborating with Johnson & Johnson for research regarding Heartline Study. The study aims to determine if Apple Watch’s electrocardiogram capabilities can decrease the chances of a stroke through early detection of afib or atrial fibrillation.

People with irregular heartbeat are prone to stroke. Thus, health experts can potentially mitigate or even prevent stroke by continuously monitoring at-risk individuals.

Another use of wearables is positive behavioral change. South Australia researchers found that wearables can encourage people to practice regular exercise.

The researchers analyzed 400 studies with 164,000 global participants using wearable activity trackers (WAT). They found that tracking one’s physical activity levels led people to walk up to 40 minutes daily. That’s roughly equivalent to 1,800 steps, resulting in an average weight loss of 1kg (2.2) over five months.

Of course, wearables aren’t exactly accurate, especially when comparing one exercise over the other. For instance, a 30-minute HIIT workout will have a varying caloric burn than a 30-minute run.

However, wearables are great at tracking your workout’s intensity over time. This can be an excellent source of an external motivator for a lot of people.

After all, it can be rewarding to see your progress outlined in your fitness tracker. And most of the time, people are hesitant to break their workout streak.

3. Virtual Healthcare

This is another healthcare trend that’s exploded in recent years. Globally, telehealth stood at $144.38 billion in 2020. By 2028, that number will balloon to $636.38 billion.

That massive growth isn’t surprising, especially given the impact of COVID-19. For instance, remote health consultations went from 0.1% to 43.5% during the first months of the pandemic. Those who avail of this service were contented with their experience too, particularly younger people. Gen Z and millennials have 86% and 83% satisfaction ratings, respectively.

Virtual healthcare is also highly beneficial for people in remote locations. For example, if an area doesn’t have a nearby physician on hand, patients can turn to virtual healthcare to assist them with their needs.

It isn’t perfect, of course. But places like China and India, where it’s extremely difficult to reach specific populations, stand to benefit the most.

4. Extended reality

Extended reality is a broad term encompassing mixed reality (MR), virtual reality (VR), and augmented reality (AR). One of its primary uses is training clinicians on sensitive operations without putting patients at risk.

It can use VR to immerse the trainee in a virtual environment completely. Or it can rely on MR and AR to overlay virtual images on real-world objects.

Aside from training, extended reality is also used in cognitive behavioral therapy. Patients with anxiety, chronic pain, and schizophrenia can battle their fears in safe environments and non-threatening spaces.

For specific applications, the AccuVein system is a good example. It acts as a vein locator through blood flow heat detection, highlighting the vein on the patient’s arm and making it easier to insert injections.

5. Large data analysis

This is an extension of AI and machine learning applications in the medical sector. A sea of data from patients has inundated the healthcare industry.

Naturally, making sense of this vast information can be incredibly challenging. Fortunately, AI and machine learning are here to process this data.

For instance, AI can handle the workload instead of nurses and physicians conducting triage during first contact in the emergency room. As a result, it frees the medical team to oversee other crucial tasks in the hospital.

On a global scale, AI and machine learning can process data globally to make informed decisions about where and when an outbreak might occur. That preventive capability can save thousands, if not millions, of lives.

Healthcare Trends in 2022: What the Future Holds

With technology advancing at an exponential rate, it’s uncertain what the medical sector will look like in the future. But one thing is certain: the merging of humans and machines to deliver high-quality medical services will only grow from here.

That’s not counting massive corporations like Apple and Amazon increasingly involving themselves in healthcare. Of course, that can be a blessing or a curse depending on how everything unfolds.

But as it stands, it seems healthcare trends will highlight the convenience and accessibility that tech will bring forward. And that’s what Catalina Imaging aims to achieve. For more information about products and services, email us at info@catalinaimaging.com or call us at (844) 949-1664.

Can CT and MRI Predict Free Flap Failure?

Predicting Free Flap Failure Using CT and MRI Scan

CT (computerized tomography) and MRI (magnetic resonance imaging) scans have revolutionized the medical industry. Both can provide valuable images to the medical team regarding diseases and human anatomy.

Today, CT and MRI have plenty of uses, from diagnosing muscle disorders and detecting brain and spinal cord anomalies. But there is another area that experts are looking into where CT and MRI scans can help.

And that area is the free flap procedure.

In this blog, we’ll examine CT and MRI and whether or not both can predict the free flap method’s success rate. But before that, let’s define free flap and its uses.

What is a free flap procedure?

A free flap procedure is where a piece of tissue is disconnected from its original area and reconnected to a distant part to cover a wound. Then, the blood vessel of the said flap is sewn to another blood vessel to reestablish the connection.

That procedure is done with the use of microvascular surgery. Here, the two blood vessels are sewn back together under a microscope.

At Catalina Imaging, our experienced professionals use the latest diagnostic equipment to provide you with accurate and precise images that help to improve your health. Contact us today for more information about how we can help you get the best possible care!

A free flap procedure has a 95% success rate. However, failure isn’t uncommon either. If worse comes to worst, the process will result in the total loss of the flap. In this case, experts may carry out a new procedure, which still has an 89% success rate, although it’s technically demanding.

Thus, monitoring the flap to assess if the procedure will hold is better. If not, early detection is crucial to salvaging the flap.

Here’s where CT and MRI come in.

Can CT and MRI foresee free flap failure?

According to a Michigan University study, CT and MRI scans are promising avenues to explore when trying to predict if a flap will fail. It will allow surgeons to intervene early and conduct appropriate corrections if proven true.

Using CT scans and MRI scans, experts can examine patients who underwent the procedure to determine if the free flap is a success, says Ashok Srinivasan, M.D., FACR, senior author of the paper and neuroradiologist at the University of Michigan Health.

Srinivasan added that the areas they’re evaluating are the blood flow going in and out of the tissue. Depending on the findings, the patient may be discharged early or if further surgical intervention is required.

If it’s the former, it will significantly lower the cost of the patient’s hospitalization. People undergoing a free flap procedure are estimated to stay in the hospital for a week. If discharged early, it will save them a substantial sum.

It’s still too early to conclude

Despite the promising findings, however, it’s still too early to say whether or not CT scans and MRI scans can indeed predict free flap viability. The researchers still need to analyze more cases before a conclusion is drawn.

As it stands, only 19 successful cases have been evaluated by the researchers. An additional five more cases were also analyzed, which exhibited wound failure.

The researchers couldn’t compare the two methods against each other due to the small sample size. Nor were they able to contrast CT and MRI perfusion techniques to ultrasound techniques for the same reason.

Surgeons often use Doppler and skin paddle techniques to evaluate the viability of free flap reconstruction. Unfortunately, both methods aren’t able to examine deeper flap aspects. Air and blood products also obstruct evaluation, which considerably lessens its accuracy.

Hence, a more robust evaluation method like CT and MRI scans is needed. The next step is to determine which of the two is more effective and cost-efficient.

Key Takeaway

From the preceding discussion, it becomes obvious CT and MRI are valuable diagnostic tools to predict free flap failure. Particularly in critical-size defects, they can be helpful in judging the quality of microsurgical skills and avoiding maloperation.

For a reliable mobile medical image service provider, you can call Catalina Imaging at (844) 949-1664. You may also email us at info@catalinaimaging.com for more information.

Who can perform a CT scan?

Who can perform a CT scan?

Computer tomography or CT scan is one of the most commonly performed medical imaging examinations to date. But as with any diagnostic test, it requires a team effort. In a nutshell, this team comprises a radiologist (they head the patient care team), nurses and CT technologists. 

 

For radiologists and hospital/medical facility managers looking for a reputable mobile CT scan rental provider, visit Catalina Imaging to learn more about our service. You can also fill out this contact form if you have any questions or requests. 

 

The CT scan team

Radiologists

They are physicians with specialist training (either residency or fellowship) who are often board certified. After obtaining their doctor of osteopathy degree or medical doctorate, they undergo additional training required by the American Board of Radiology. 

 

The additional training includes the use and interpretation of CT images and the safety standards and protocols, allowing them to interpret the results and send a detailed report to the referring physician.

 

These are the other tasks performed by radiologists: 

  • Administer or oversee the contrast injection
  • Perform CT-guided biopsy procedures and other similar interventions
  • Review the information gathered from the imaging procedure
  • Communicate the results to physicians and patients 

 

CT technologists 

They are specially trained to operate modern CT systems and typically receive two or more years of training in computed tomography and X-ray before they obtain their certification from the American Registry of Radiologic Technologists or ARRT. 

 

CT technologists also perform patient examinations under the supervision of a radiologist and administer the contrast injection if required. 

 

Radiology nurses

They are registered or enrolled nurses who care for all patients in the radiology department (either in a hospital or a private radiology practice). 

 

Radiology nurses routinely check IVs, monitor vital signs, administer medications and help patients with their personal needs.  

 

Catalina Imaging: Who We Are

At Catalina Imaging, the CT scanners we use in our trailers are from reputable tech companies like Toshiba, Siemens, and GE. Read more about the models we offer to our partner hospitals and medical facilities. 

 

We also have multiple service and storage locations in California, Minnesota, North Carolina and Illinois. You can read more about our mobile CT rental here

Ways to promote a smooth workflow in your CT scan department

Ways to promote a smooth workflow in your CT scan department

For hospital or diagnostic imaging managers, one of the critical indicators of success is a smooth department workflow in which the patients are happy, the uptime is impressive, and all the stakeholders are efficient and stress-free (or at least most of the time). 

 

At Catalina Imaging, we have a large fleet of mobile CT scan rental trailers for hospitals and clinics that need CT scans from reputable tech companies like Toshiba, Siemens, and GE.  

Create an environment where everyone is accountable 

If you want your department to be efficient and patient-centered, the most important thing you need to do is create a system where everyone is accountable for their job. For instance, you need to designate people who will be responsible for ensuring that the patients are reminded a day or two before their scheduled test or a staff who will focus on taking a quick consulting call from a physician.

 

Listen to the stakeholders’ feedback

If you’re having problems like high employee turnover rate, high number of patient “no-shows” downtime, delays, etc., you need to meet with your team and ask for their feedback. 

 

Perhaps you need to add hours to accommodate the growing number of patients? Or maybe improve customer service and communications? Whatever it is, listening to your staff’s input shows that their welfare and opinion matter to you. 

Provide customer support training

Everyone in the team should know how to handle customer complaints and concerns, which is why you need to provide customer service training. It doesn’t have to be exhaustive; just a basic set of communication skills like saying, “I can help you find someone who can address your problem,” rather than telling a patient, “I can’t help you.”

 

Create an efficient system to avoid long waits

Long waits reduce patient satisfaction and affect your reputation and productivity. As a result, you need to adopt these strategies to avoid this issue: 

  • Frequent and transparent communications between patients and staff. For instance, someone should remind the patients a week, one day and a few hours before their scheduled CT scan. In short, transparency and excellent communications can go a long way. 
  • Speed up service time.
  • Implement a queue management system (in-location and even virtual queue if possible). 
  • Utilize queue data to optimize staffing. 

 

Reliability and Customer Service Key to Injector Uptime and CT Department Workflow

At Catalina Imaging, we have a large fleet of mobile CT scanners for clinics and hospitals looking for CT rentals with state-of-the-art technologies from Toshiba, Siemens, and GE. Visit our website and leave a message to learn more about our CT rental services in California, North Carolina, Illinois and Minnesota. 

How to improve your patient no-show in the imaging department

How to improve your patient no-show in the imaging department

The imaging department has one of the highest patient no-show and reschedule rates, with one study suggesting that it could be as high as 35%. Meanwhile, failure to keep it under control can lead to a wide range of issues, from lost revenue and delayed patient care to underutilized staff and resources. 

 

If your hospital or medical facility is dealing with high patient no-show and reschedule rates, you need to know the reason behind this trend. But to give you an idea, there are common denominators that mobile CT scanners rental fleet provider Catalina Imaging has noticed: 

  • Financial anxiety 
  • Lack of communication between the patients and their doctors 
  • Failure to understand the procedure instructions 
  • Lack of transportation
  • Incomplete pre-authorization requirements 

 

Knowing the reasons for patient no-show is critical for creating policies and measures to reduce this costly problem that the radiology departments usually face.

 

How to reduce patient no-show 

As an industry leader with more than 50 years of combined experience in maintaining a mobile imaging rental fleet, Catalina Imaging has come up with this list of tried-and-tested recommendations.

 

Create an effective patient reminder system 

  • Ask your patients about their preferred method of reminders (e.g., email, text, and call).
  • Set up automatic reminders one week before the scheduled procedure, two days before, and one hour before the appointment. But for appointments that are scheduled more than eight weeks in advance, additional reminders become even more critical to reduce patient no-show rates. 
  • Allow patients to reschedule their appointments to fill the vacant spot and avoid underutilized resources and staff. 

 

Follow a streamlined pre-authorization process

  • Ideally, there should be a team that is responsible for imaging pre-authorization. 
  • Train this team and teach each member to have a sense of accountability. 
  • Create a system that immediately resolves pre-authorization delays and makes it easy for patients to reschedule their appointments. 

 

Promote constant communication with patients 

  • Ask patients or have them answer a survey to know their preferred method of communication. The idea here is to meet them where they are. 
  • If the language barrier is an issue, schedulers should mention that in the patient records. 
  • Create electronic medical records that your patients can access independently. 
  • Staff should explain the prep instructions and ask the patients about their concerns (finance-related, length of procedure, etc.)

 

Streamline your collection system

  • Ideally, require partial payment early on to increase the likelihood of full patient obligation. 
  • Be transparent with the prices so the patients will know the price estimates and prepare for them. 

 

Provide transport service 

  • Surveys have shown that transport barriers cause a significant number of patient no-shows.
  • Offer transportation services or partner with ride-sharing service providers. 
  • After implementing any of the measures mentioned above, continue tracking the no-show rates to assess whether they are effective or not.

 

Solving the Dilemma Created by the No-Show Patient

When your patients don’t show up for appointments, it extends your waiting list and wastes your resources (especially staffing). For this reason, you need to implement measures that limit the number of no-shows and reschedules. 

 

Another way hospitals and medical facilities can maximize their resources and avoid revenue loss is to partner with a reliable mobile CT scan rental fleet provider. At Catalina Imaging, we not just provide technical insights but also 24/7 customer support for service emergencies and full-service OEM contracts between 8 am and 5 pm Monday to Friday (except holidays). 

 

To learn more about how our mobile imaging fleet can meet your short- and long-term needs, contact us here. You can also text or call us at (844) 949-1664 or email us at info@catalinaimaging.com

New mobile CT scanners use lower radiation dose

New mobile CT scanners use lower radiation dose

One of the reasons some patients are apprehensive about getting their CT scans is the radiation exposure. Fortunately, some scanners nowadays use lower radiation doses but are still able to provide a more detailed, accurate image. 

 

For instance, at Catalina Imaging, we manage a fleet of mobile CT scanners from reputable tech companies like Toshiba, GE and Siemens. Not only does our equipment use lower radiation doses, we also have a 24/7 customer service team to answer your inquiries and provide you service emergencies. To learn more about our mobile CT scan rental service, contact us here or call or text us at 844-949-1664.

 

Modern medical imaging procedures and radiation risks

Despite the publication of some sensationalized articles about the radiation and cancer risks with medical imaging procedures, health authorities like the American Association of Physicists in Medicine believe that today’s technology uses radiation that is too low that the perceived risks “are barely detectable or even nonexistent.”

 

In 2005, experts also conducted a study in which they observed DNA repaired themselves after CT scans.

 

The problem with sensationalistic articles about medical imaging procedures and cancer risks is that it discourages some parents and patients to undergo a much needed CT scan testing, preventing their doctors from diagnosing an internal injury or disease and treating them soon. 

 

While it’s important to only perform medical procedures that are necessary, stoking fear of radiation is not the right way to reduce the number of unnecessary procedures. 

 

It’s important to evaluate objectively the statistical risk of developing cancer caused by radiation versus skipping a medically required CT scan. For instance, one study suggested that for every 1,000 children who do not undergo medically necessary imaging radiation, around 200-250 will die because of lack of proper diagnosis and treatment. 

 

By contrast, the perceived increased risk of cancer over a patient’s lifetime from a single CT scan is almost imperceptible, just a mere 0.03 – 0.05%. In short, a medically necessary CT scan does not represent a direct risk to a patient. 

 

Ways to further reduce the radiation exposure 

For hospitals and other medical facilities, the first step to reduce the radiation exposure is to partner with a mobile CT scan rental provider like Catalina Imaging that offers the latest medical imaging technology. 

 

These are the other things that can further minimize radiation risk to patients: 

  • Only use imaging medical imaging techniques when there is a clear medical benefit. 
  • Image only the indicated area.
  • Use the lowest amount of radiation; for this reason, children should receive a lower dose than adults because of their smaller body frame. 
  • Avoid multiple scans. 

 

Final Words on CT Scan and Radiation Exposure

With newer CT scanners that use a lower dose of radiation, a medically necessary imaging procedure does pose a very minimal or even a non-existent cancer risk.

 

In the US, over 80 million CT scans are performed every year, making them one of the most popular medical imaging procedures in the country. 

 

If you want to learn more about low-dose CT scan or you need a reliable CT scan rental provider that can meet your facility’s long-term and temporary needs, Catalina Imaging offers a fleet that’s located in California, Minnesota, North Carolina, and Illinois.