Toshiba DR comes through for new imaging center

January 7, 2005

The Sequoia Imaging Center of Visalia, CA, was to be a full-service operation, featuring everything digital from MR to DR. But it almost didn't happen, at least not by the scheduled grand opening. As the deadline approached, digital radiography was threatening to make a mess of it. Director of imaging services, Gordon Ah Tye, was fed up.

The Sequoia Imaging Center of Visalia, CA, was to be a full-service operation, featuring everything digital from MR to DR. But it almost didn't happen, at least not by the scheduled grand opening. As the deadline approached, digital radiography was threatening to make a mess of it. Director of imaging services, Gordon Ah Tye, was fed up.

"We had incredible problems with [the original vendor's] limited flexibility with the room we wanted it installed in," he said.

It all worked out in the end. On Oct. 4, the doors opened and each modality was operating: MR, CT, ultrasound, and radiography/fluoroscopy. Even DR, the source of headaches for months, was up and running.

The system finally installed was the T-Rad Plus, Toshiba's first-generation DR system. Ah Tye had been dead set against buying anything first generation.

"You want to be aggressive, to be on the cutting edge of technology," he said. "But you don't want to be on the bleeding edge."

Initially, Ah Tye had contracted for a proven DR system. But the maker couldn't meet the promised installation date. Toshiba, Ah Tye's backup, met it a week before opening and with less than a month's notice.

"They worked 24 hours a day to build it and actually had it in our facility, ready to go-operational-in two weeks," Ah Tye said.

This experience, as positive as it was, didn't put much of a dent in Ah Tye's fear of first-generation equipment. He chalked it up to being an anomaly. What made the difference was his relationship with Toshiba. People mean as much or more than the equipment, he said, at least when it comes to DR.

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