Hospital gets new CT Scanner, but needs more money to run it

Members of the West Nipissing General Hospital team, who were instrumental in getting the CT scanner running, pose with the new machine on November 9. The hospital will be holding a grand opening for the machine later this month.

No longer will local patients have to travel to North Bay or Sudbury just to get detailed imaging of what’s going on inside their body, now that the West Nipissing General Hospital’s brand-new CT scanner is up and running.

The state-of-the-art machine scanned its first patient on Tuesday, November 10; the culmination of years of planning and work to bring this standard of care to the community.

“We’re quite excited, it’s a great opportunity for our hospital and our community and we look forward to better serving our patients,” says West Nipissing General Hospital CEO Cynthia Desormiers.

WNGH got final approval from the Ministry of Health to purchase the machine in March of this year. Though the province needs to approve the purchase, the $1.84 million bill for the CT scanner and renovations to the room that houses it, was funded entirely by the hospital’s savings and local donations.

However, operating the brand-new machine will cost between $282,000 and $293,000 per year, due to its service contract, supplies and staffing expenses. That’s where the hospital is looking to the Municipality of Nipissing West to chip in and help offset the cost of running the CT scanner. Désormiers made a presentation to town council earlier this month, requesting that the municipality consider a tax levy of $7.50 per household over the next decade. The initial response from West Nipissing council was positive, but they’ll discuss the matter further at their November 17 meeting, once they get a report on what the levy would be if businesses were included along with households.  

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