New ‘MRI on the Stray’ scanner opens at Harrogate District Hospital

A new magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scanner – called MRI on the Stray because of its specially designed interior – is now being used by Harrogate District Hospital’s Radiology team.

The scanner interior has been specifically designed to fit with the environment in mind and reflects space and light experienced while walking on the Stray, with a bright ceiling showing a blue sky and leafy trees.

MRI is a type of scan that uses strong magnetic fields and radio waves to produce detailed images of the inside of the body. It is a large tube that contains powerful magnets which people lie inside during the scan.

A scan can be used to examine almost any part of the body, including the, brain and spinal cord, bones and joints and internal organs. The results of an MRI scan can be used to help diagnose conditions, plan treatments and assess how effective previous treatment has been.

The unit is a 1.5 Teslar Siemens Avanto scanner in a van, which is situated just outside the Acute Medical Unit.

A walkway and ramp leads down to the van steps, and there is a lift for wheelchair access. Patients book in in MRI in main department and then are guided to the van by a member of staff. The unit is mainly used for outpatients who can manage the walk up the hill, though would be used for any patient if necessary.

Libby Watkins, Radiology Services Manager at Harrogate and District NHS Foundation Trust, which runs Harrogate District Hospital, said:

We are really pleased to be able to provide MRI scans in this excellent new facility. ‘MRI on the Stray’ also increases our capacity as a department to provide MRI scans, meaning shorter waiting times for patients.

We know how important it is for patients to feel relaxed when having an MRI scan, and the relaxing atmosphere created by the ceiling especially really does contribute to that. Patient feedback has been very positive.


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