New MRI Drops on NorthBay Medical Center Campus

A $1.5 million, state-of-the-art, Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) scanner dropped in on NorthBay Medical Center campus last Wednesday, and settled into its new home, a $1.2 million modular building.

Both the magnet and the building were lowered out of the sky by a huge crane.mri2 


Work began at 6 a.m. with the arrival of two “wide load” trucks carrying the modular building.


The foundation for the building, located just outside Unit 1800, was prepped and ready. 


One by one, the halves of the modular building, each weighing about 50,000 pounds, were raised by crane and gently lowered into place. 


Once the building was secure, a hatch in the roof was removed and the heart of the MRI — the magnet — was lowered into place.


In the next month, the building will be finished inside and out and furniture moved in. Toshiba engineers will finish the MRI installation and train staff on the new system. 


The new MRI — a Toshiba Vantage Titan, Open-Bore 1.5 Tesla (high field) — features quiet technology and high-definition scanning. It is also roomier for the patient.


“The Toshiba is designed with patient comfort in mind,” says Adrian Riggs, director of Solano Diagnostics Imaging.  


The Vantage Titan’s ultra-short open bore offers up to 100 percent more clearance space above the patient. This allows patients to be scanned without having their heads inside the magnet for some tests.

The MRI also performs a wider range of exams, from bariatric to breast and non-contrast imaging.


Owned and operated by Solano Diagnostics Imaging, a NorthBay affiliate, the new service will be open to the public in late September.


By moving the MRI next to the hospital, hospital patients will no longer need an ambulance ride across the street. The cost savings are expected to pay for the MRI in a few years.


Once the facility opens this fall, Solano Diagnostics Imaging will no longer operate an MRI in the NorthBay Health Plaza building, but will continue all other imaging services there.