GMHA purchases two new C-Arms to advance excellent patient care

This new technology ensures the highest quality imaging for patients, including those diagnosed with COVID-19, undergoing procedures at Guam’s community hospital. (GMHA photo)

As part of Guam Memorial Hospital Authority’s relentless pursuit to provide excellent, accessible healthcare, the hospital has purchased two new C-Arm machines.

This new technology ensures the highest quality imaging for patients, including those diagnosed with COVID-19, undergoing procedures at Guam’s community hospital.

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The machines were purchased using the Provider Relief Fund, which is part of the federal CARES Act funding. GMHA was able to stretch some $500,000 to purchase two machines.

The first is a much-needed upgrade to the Operating Room imaging equipment; the second, a smaller “mobile” C-Arm allows for expanded services for Interventional Radiology teams.

“The Mobile C-Arm is our newest diagnostic imaging machine that gives physicians, nurses, and technicians a clearer, more vivid image inside a patient’s body while they undergo procedures. It does this while also emitting much less radiation to the patient and staff,” said Belle Rada, GMHA Assistant Administrator of Professional Support Services. “This purchase is a big win for our Guam community, who can now receive cutting-edge medical services, right here at home.”

For the Interventional Radiology (IR) team specifically, the mobile C-Arm now allows them more flexibility during their leading-edge procedures. IR is the latest and most advanced iteration of surgeries in the medical sphere. It combines the diagnostic imaging capabilities of radiology, with minimally invasive procedures to allow patients far shorter post-operative healing times.

“This technology will change the face of medicine on Guam and provide increased support to our healthcare workers as they continue working tirelessly through pandemic conditions,” said Governor Lou Leon Guerrero. “We are grateful that GMH has received this much-needed boost to their capabilities, which will ensure higher quality treatment for all their patients.”

‘The Interventional Radiology team has the capability of treating deep, nearly impossible to reach areas through the patient’s circulatory system. The highly-trained staff use probes to travel through arteries and veins to reach the area of treatment, they can then deploy numerous treatments or interventions, such as chemotherapy agents, in the target areas. What’s particularly exciting about IR, is that patients often have little to no downtime after the procedures, often going home the same day. This technology is changing the face of medicine on Guam.

The addition of the mobile C-Arm to the IR department will allow more patients to be seen at GMHA for IR procedures. Improved workflows mean more capabilities and better productivity, ultimately supporting the hospital’s mission of providing excellent healthcare that’s accessible to all our people. The added equipment will also help GMHA come closer to its goal of long-term financial stability.

“These machines, much like other GMHA equipment purchases and upgrades, will help advance our mission of providing excellent healthcare, that’s accessible to everyone on Guam,” said William Kando, GMHA Associate Administrator of Operations. “We are blessed to have been afforded these federal dollars, which are helping us purchase equipment, upgrade our facility and launch programs and services to support our patient care.”