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Medical Equipment, MRI Machines, Mobile

The 3 Most Common Mobile MRI Machine Use Cases

Author: Jeff Hough November 5, 2018

The 3 Most Common Mobile MRI Machine Use Cases

An MRI is one of the most expensive pieces of diagnostic imaging equipment used by a hospital or clinic. The machine accounts for only a portion of the total investment. Other costs include room construction, shielding, annual maintenance and staff wages. For some facilities, the economics, due to patient volume or upfront costs, simply don’t justify an in-house system. An alternative to referring out all of your MRI scans to another facility, is the use of a mobile or modular system.

What is a Mobile MRI?

A mobile MRI is a self-contained suite that houses the scanner, control room and in some cases the patient changing room. It’s called a mobile unit because the suite is built into a 48” semi-trailer that can be transported between multiple locations or connected directly to a single facility.

The Three Most Common MRI Mobile Use Cases

  • Scenario #1: Space and Building Constraints
    MRI machines require prime real estate (typically on the first floor) for the scanner, computer systems and patient prep. It also has to be placed in a magnetically shielded room to protect the outside area from the MRI’s powerful magnetic field and to maintain the integrity of the machine’s image from outside interference. If the space is not available or the cost of construction is a factor, moving the MRI outside of the facility into a mobile unit can be a solution to both issues.
  • Scenario #2: Splitting the Cost
    Mobile MRIs can be stationary or they can be placed on a route. Systems on a route can be shared between more than one facility, maximizing the utilization of the machine and granting access to facilities that might not have the demand to justify their own system. Keep in mind, when a system is on a route, it will require a driver, tractor and support staff.
  • Scenario #3: Short Term Rentals
    When replacing an existing system, constructing a new MRI suite or in the event of a system failure, the short-term rental of a mobile MRI can help a facility keep up with demand. The goal is to avoid downtime, service disruptions and loss of revenue.

Available Systems

Only select MRI makes and models are certified for mobile use. While most mobile systems will have the 60cm bore size, some 70cm systems can be found. The shielding on a mobile trailer also limits the field strength to 1.5T. Popular mobile options include the GE 16x and 23x MRI and Siemens Avanto and Espree.

Service

Don’t be surprised if service runs you a little more for a mobile unit. The service costs may vary depending on whether or not you have it on a route or whether it is parked at your facility. Most service contracts will only cover the MRI machine, with service available for the trailer if requested.

If you’re looking for a mobile or fixed site MRI, the industry experts at Meridian Leasing will work with you to help you determine the right equipment for your clinical and financial needs. Call +1 (888) 255-5320 or send an email to sales@meridianleasing.com for more details or to speak with a medical equipment specialist.

  • Medical Equipment,
  • MRI Machine,
  • MRI,
  • Mobile,
  • Magnetic resonance imaging
Jeff Hough

Jeff Hough
Program Manager, Healthcare
Meridian Leasing

“Other vendors that I have used don't have healthcare expertise. With Meridian, I have subject matter experts there.”

Brooke Migues

Director of Surgical Services, University Hospital and Clinics

Brooke Migues
Brooke Migues

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