MRI Milestone Celebrated at Mills Memorial Hospital

Terrace's new MRI unit has now performed over 500 examinations -- and the milestone was marked by a special ceremony this afternoon at Mills Memorial Hospital.

The Magnetic Resonance Imaging machine went into service in August, after five months of construction and equipment testing.

Doctor Elliot Rapp, a radiologist who has been a leader on the project, says the MRI has opened a vital new chapter in health care for the Northwest.

"I can confidently say that over the past few months, we've had a tremendous impact on patients throughout the northwest, all the way from Houston to Haida Gwaii; every day we diagnose things like brain tumours, liver masses, ligament damage -- and previously this process would take months, if not years, because of the high barriers to accessing travel -- these patients would have to travel hundreds of kilometres and spend a lot of money, a lot of time and a lot of time away from family, in order to get these diseases diagnosed that we're now able to do right here in Terrace," he said, during Friday's ceremony.

Funding for the 2.9-million dollar MRI project in Terrace came from the Ministry of Health and the Northwest Regional Hospital District.

Northern Health has also installed MRI units in Fort St John and Prince George.