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CT scan update
Following media enquiries into the status of the Computer Tomography (CT) Scan project at the National Referral Hospital (NRH), the Ministry of Health and Medical Services (MHMS) would like to provide an update with clarifications on the project components and processes involved to the public.
The CT scan project has two key components; one is the CT building component and the other CT Equipment and Accessory Component. There are also other minor essential components such as staffing training requirements, consumables, administration policies, and clinical guidelines development. The CT Building component is near completion with expected time of completion by end of July 2021.
The CT equipment and accessory component of the project consists of the supply of the CT equipment, emergency accessory equipment for the CT exam room, computer systems upgrades, installation of these equipment, application training, and service contracts. The contract for the supply and installation of the accessory equipment contract have been signed with South Austral Ltd, Australian based Company. Supplier is currently organizing shipment and delivery of the all the equipment ordered as per the contract.
Another contract has been signed with Flex Data, also an Australian based company that was awarded to supply PACs (Picture, Achieves, and Communication System) hardware . Organization of shipment and delivery of the hardware underway.
For the actual CT scan machine itself, the Ministry of Health is currently processing payment documents to be submitted to the Ministry of Finance for the payment of the machine and the PACS software upgrade.
The staffing requirement for the CT services has been identified and will consist of local staffs, who are qualified to operate the CT equipment. Application training is part of the project, plus on-going training throughout the period of service maintenance. There are now three radiologist at NRH, who will be responsible to interpret the CT examinations.
Specialised consumables for the CT operation has started to arrive at the National Medical Stores. The Radiology Department who is responsible for the CT, have started discussing the Administration and Operation Policy for the CT service. This will cover issues such as opening hours, types of examinations, reporting of CT exams, staffing rosters, and more.
Government has prioritized budget for this component and payment is in progress. Once payment is made all the equipment and accessories will then be shipped over and installed at the CT building.
There have been some delays and this is mainly due to the 2021 budget approval. Payment process only commenced after the budget was approved by parliament this year and health is following closely with the payment process. Most of the building materials were procured overseas so there is also a lead time. The CT equipment and accessories component is expected to be completed by November this year.
With regards to the SBD11 million dollars needed for the CT as discussed during the Parliamentary Health and Medical Services Committee meeting, the government had already committed SBD 12.6 million to foot the expenses under its budget allocation to health for 2021 .
A CT Project Steering Committee is responsible to oversee the management of the CT Project with the head of Radiology Department of NRH as the project manager. Hatanga LTD has been contracted for the CT building component whose duration is ending as soon as work is completed.
All these completed, will enable the commissioning of CT building and all the equipment and accessories for use. CT service opening is expected around November ,2021.
CT scan is crucial for appropriate medical treatment as it enables detailed images of many structures inside the body, including internal organs, blood vessels and bones. They can be used to diagnose conditions including damage to bones, injuries to internal organs, problems with blood flow, stroke and cancer. Many of our sick patients with non-communicable diseases will benefit greatly from the CT Scan.