Methodist Northlake reveals changes
By Michelle L. Quinn Post-Tribune correspondent September 25, 2012 11:30AM
GARY — A new urology table installed at Methodist Hospitals’ Northlake campus promises to halve the time a patient is on the table as well as continue the health-care system’s commitment to bringing the most cutting-edge treatment to Northwest Indiana.
In use for the last few weeks, hospital administrators unveiled the new system during a reception in the newly renovated Northlake campus Monday afternoon. The biggest changes over the old table, according to Tom Riethmiller, president of Ft. Wayne-based Adrian Medical Inc. and who worked with the hospital on installing both the new and old equipment, are the way in which radiation from the x-ray machine is dispersed and the the technology by which the doctors will now view scoped images.
Instead of the camera emitting rays from above the patient, allowing the radiation to disperse at person-level, it now emits from below, Riethmiller said, so that radiation levels that weren’t necessarily harmful in the first place are even less so because they flow toward the ground.
“The percentages can’t necessarily be quantified because that depends on the size of the person,” Riethmiller said. “But by going toward the floor, the reduction is significant.”
With several 26-inch digital screens attached the apparatus, diagnoses will be simply a matter of inserting a camera-attached catheter into the ureter and being showing up on the screen — a thrilling prospect to Ayo Gomih, a urologist with Methodist.
“The process is now simplified,” Gomih said. “You would have to see the old equipment, which had been known to fail. Now, not only can you see what we’re looking at, but you see it in detail and achieve the same objective.”
Being able to see such detail cuts down the need for invasive surgery in some cases, said Amanda Breitweiser, surgery manager for the Northlake campus. It also lessens procedure time overall to around 30 minutes for those who don’t need to be opened up.
The table, exclusive to the Northlake campus, will also be used for other disciplines, such as laparpscopic procedures and gynecology.
“We will get the bang for our buck,” Breitweiser said.
The table, of which installation took about a day and a half compared with two to three weeks in other hospitals, cost Methodist $600,000, according to Methodist Chief Financial Officer Matt Doyle. Because the installation went so superbly, the Gary campus will be a reference site and model, Riethmiller.
Methodist CEO Ian McFadden said that falls in line with its continuing mission.
“We’re happy to be one of the first in the country to have this mobile imaging,” McFadden said. “Not only is the hospital a primary provider of sophisticated care for the city, but we now have several different advancements.”