A new computed tomography (CT) scanner was officially launched at the Pengiran Muda Mahkota Pengiran Muda Haji Al-Muhtadee Billah (PMMPMHAMB) Hospital in the Tutong District yesterday.
The guest of honour was Minister of Health Dato Seri Setia Dr Haji Mohd Isham bin Haji Jaafar, who also had a closer look at the new scanning device.
The 64-slice single-source CT scanner was installed and tested in the hospital on July 13.
It is one of the measures made by the Government of His Majesty Sultan Haji Hassanal Bolkiah Mu’izzaddin Waddaulah ibni Al-Marhum Sultan Haji Omar ‘Ali Saifuddien Sa’adul Khairi Waddien, Sultan and Yang Di-Pertuan of Brunei Darussalam to provide high-quality healthcare for the public, especially those in the Tutong District.
Consultant Radiologist and Head of Radiologist at the Ministry of Health (MoH) Dr Lim Kian Chai said in an interview, “Before this newly-acquired scanner, residents of the Tutong District would have to go to RIPAS Hospital in the Brunei-Muara District for a CT scan, which is an inconvenience for the patients and their families. The transporting of patients between the hospitals is also a problem.”
However, he added that CT scan services would be made available at the PMMPMHAMB Hospital only at a later date.
“Before commencing, we have to make sure that all the safety features are in place. Patient safety is always our priority, as the rooms have to be safe, the staff well-trained and so on. This will involve the participation of local companies and foreign experts, in certifying the safety features, before we can commence.”
The CT scan will also benefit the hospital’s Radiology Division by introducing services such as computed tomography of the thoracic, abdominal and pelvic (CT TAP) and cardiac computed tomography (cardiac CT).
Describing the medical benefits of a CT scan, Dr Lim said, “It’s a specialised radiology investigation that uses advanced technology to scan and obtain detailed images of the patient’s internal body structure.
“Doctors depend heavily on CT scan results to decide on the management of patients with certain clinical conditions such as stroke, coma, infections and cancer.” In addition, the CT scan has proven to be more sensitive than normal X-rays in scanning and monitoring the changes in the condition of the lungs of suspected and confirmed COVID-19 patients.
Also attending the launch were Permanent Secretary at the MoH Haji Abdul Manap bin Othman, Deputy Permanent Secretary (Policy and Management) at the MoH Haji Maswadi bin Haji Mohsin and Acting Deputy Permanent Secretary (Professional) at the MoH Pengiran Dr Haji Khalifah bin Pengiran Haji Ismail.