New MRI scanner room unveiled

A new MRI room, complete with a special backlit picture ceiling, has been unveiled in the radiology department at Forth Valley Royal Hospital.

The room houses a second state-of-the-art MRI scanner which was delivered to Forth Valley Royal Hospital earlier in July 2019. The £1million specialist 3Tesla scanner weighs 8 tonnes and has a magnet which is double the strength of the hospital’s existing MRI scanner. It is therefore able to provide higher quality images for more complex scans and faster scan times.

A special picture ceiling has been installed in the room which features images of a blue sky,  clouds and trees to help patients relax and provide a visual distraction. The room also has ambient lighting to help create a calmer, less clinical environment.

MRI scanners are used to take images of all parts of the body including the brain, spinal cord, heart and blood vessels and internal organs such as the liver, womb, prostate gland and gall bladder. This second scanner will enable NHS Forth Valley to scan thousands of additional patients every year with scanning taking place 12 hours a day, 7 days a week.  Six additional MRI radiographers have been recruited to support the additional work.

The creation of a second MRI room is part of a wider £17 million expansion plan to expand diagnostic, theatre and inpatient capacity at Forth Valley Hospital and support the Scottish Government’s National Waiting Times Improvement Plan and Elective Care Centre Programme.

Sandra Robertson, NHS Forth Valley’s Radiology Department Manager, said: “This second scanning room will enable us to provide thousands of additional MRI scans every year and we hope that the new picture ceiling of the sky will help people relax and give them something nice to look at as they prepare for their scan.”