PMC Adding New Radiology Services for Local Care

Prowers Medical Center



The Prowers Medical Center Board of Directors decided to allocate $1.5M for a new MRI and Mammography machine, an upgrade the directors have been considering for a while. The directors also moved to provide access to a mobile PET scanner which will be available on the campus two days a week.

The current MRI unit is an acronym for Magnetic Resonance Imaging. The device uses a large magnet and radio waves to look at organs and structures inside a body. Physicians use MRI scans to diagnose a variety of conditions, from torn ligaments to tumors.  The PET Scanner, or Positron Emission Tomography uses imaging displays to check for certain diseases which are highlighted by adding a dye to a body’s area containing tracer elements by way of an injection, orally or by inhalation.

The new MRI is estimated at $1M and a new, adjacent building to house the unit is estimated at $500K. Currently patients have to walk outdoors in any type of weather to the trailer that houses the old MRI model.  The trailer, when complete, will be equipped with a dressing room and restroom facilities.  The MRI unit will be an upgraded model which will provide 48 channels of depth and clarity for the exam compared to the current unit which is capable of four channels.  The new Mammography machine will provide more versatility and comfort to patients.  The radiology upgrades will allow patients to receive state of the art treatment locally, instead of traveling out of the area for examinations.

Other equipment upgrades include new services from Avera Health. This regional service company provides diagnostic health information to a number of hospitals, covering 60 distinct specialties, including behavioral health, cardiology, oncology, orthopedics, brain and spine, neurosurgery, digestive disease, bariatrics, dermatology, endocrinology and diabetes, ophthalmology, pulmonology and sleep medicine, pain management, neonatology, pediatrics, rheumatology and women’s specialties.  This will allow Prowers Medical Center to provide internal medicine doctors on a 24/7 basis through tele-health technology.

The Rehabilitation Department, which received a comprehensive expansion during the renovation project is moving from paper documentation to an electronic system which will allow the providers an in-depth record of treatment for more accurate care and subsequent billing practices. On-going care will be documented from visit to visit for physical, occupational and speech therapy.

The hospital’s laboratory department will now be able to test for influenza, strep and RSV with a shorter turnaround time, providing more accurate results within minutes for a patient. As was noted in an earlier article, new signage has been provided to patients directing them to their area of treatment; a new and expanded Kendall Drive makes the drive more pleasant and the hospital had added new signage to the main entrance.

The Prowers County Hospital District has an question on the November Ballot, Question 7A, stating, “Shall the term limits imposed by Article XVIII, section 11 of the Colorado constitution be eliminated for Prowers County Hospital District directors?” The constitution currently calls for two, four year terms.  There are no seats presently up for election.  An election was scheduled for this past May, but there were no more applicants than for the available seats and as no interest was shown from potential candidates, the election was cancelled and the board was unchanged.

The next election cycle for the district will occur in May 2020 with Julie Branes and Ty Rushton’s seats becoming available. There is a current vacant seat, left by Matt Snyder which may be filled by appointment, but it would be up for election at that time.  Self-nominating forms will be available suitably in advance of the election cycle in 2020.

The next PMC Board of Directors meeting is scheduled on the 4th Wednesday of every month, October 24th at 6pm.

By Russ Baldwin

Filed Under: City of LamarConsumer IssuesCountyFeaturedHealthPublic Safety


About the Author: