Expanded MRI services a success says BC NDP

The BC Government says its plan to expand MRI services across the province was a success.

Health Minister Adrian Dix says they exceeded their targets in year one of their plan - performing nearly 44-thousand more exams compared to 2017-18.

He says expanding hours of operation was one reason.. 

"We kept the machines open and people are coming and getting their diagnosis, their essential MRI, at 3:00 and 4:00 and 2:00 in the morning, in order to ensure that they get to the point of recovery sooner in their health-care journey. I think that's critically important. So, centralized intake, using existing machines to the maximum, and adding new machines where necessary are all part of this success," says Dix.    

He says the government is now taking further action to expand services and reduce wait times by adding another 15,000 MRI exams to this past year's success. A further $5.25-million is being added to complete almost 248,369 exams annually.

He says a year ago - BC was the worst in Canada in terms of access to MRI's.

MRI is one of the tools used to diagnose a number of medical conditions, including abnormalities of the brain, as well as tumours, cysts and soft-tissue injuries in other parts of the body.

An early diagnosis can lead to early treatment, which can positively impact people's quality of life and return them to being contributing members of their communities and the economy.