Hospital purchases ‘cutting edge’ 3D mammography machine

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By Tia Lynn Ivey

managing editor

Morgan Memorial Hospital (MMH) has secured a cutting-edge machine that improves the early detection of breast cancer. The Morgan Memorial Hospital Authority (MMHA) voted unanimously to purchase a 3D Mammography machine that costs $400,000.

“It’s worth every penny,” said MMHA Chairman Terry Evans.

“The Board voted to enter into an Operating Lease Agreement with Hologic Capital for a Selenia Dimensions 3D 6000 Mammography Unit.  This piece of equipment will be transferable to the new hospital and the payments for the equipment will be reimbursable on the Medicare Cost Report,” said Kyle Wilkinson, chief finance officer for MMH.   

The new mammography machine is expected to arrive in April of this year and will be transferred over to the new hospital once its completed. This 3D Mammography is the latest technology in breast cancer detection and is praised by doctors and patients alike for its accuracy, efficiency, and comfort.

Because of the superior 3D technology, the new mammography machine can detect breast cancer earlier. According to Kaye Utley, who presented information about the technology to the MMHA board last week, the machine can detect 41 percent more invasive breast cancers than the current 2D mammography machine and cuts out false readings by 41 percent.

“The difference is amazing,” said Utley. “The 3D technology catches a lot of cancers that the 2D misses.”

Utley cited a poll conducted among female patients, which revealed 99 percent of women were willing to drive to farther hospitals just to undergo the 3D mammography.

“This is the future,” said Evans. “When we talk about saving lives this is just another example of how this hospital can save lives of the women right here in our own community and in surrounding areas.”

MMH performs over 900 mammograms annually, but according to Utley, MMH has lost patients because more women are seeking out 3D Mammography services.

Ralph Castillo, CEO of Morgan Memorial Hospital, praised the MMHA’s decision to purchase the machine.

“This is an important piece of equipment for the hospital that will be eventually transferred over to the new hospital,” said Castillo.

“We should also note that this $400,000 machine, along with $1 million worth of diagnostic machinery, will be first housed in a 20-year-old trailer that cost $60,000. And yet, some people don’t think we need a new hospital.”

MMH will make payments on the new 3D Mammography machine over the course of five years before it is paid off entirely. Wilkinson also presented MMH’s financial statements for the preceding month, reporting another month in the black. According to Wilkinson, “for the month of December 2016, we had a Net Income of $317,158.  This brings our year to date Net Income to $952,352.  We had Net Patient Revenue of $1,243,232, Other Revenue of $11,382, Operating Expenses of ($1,021,127) and Non-operating Revenues of $83,671.”            

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