AN MRI service is set to be added to the facilities at the Bathurst Hospital.


Member for Bathurst Paul Toole announced today the NSW Government would provide funding to the Bathurst Health Service to get the new MRI up and running.


“This will allow more local residents to receive potentially life-saving diagnosis and treatment at Bathurst Hospital,” Mr Toole said.


MRI - or magnetic resonance imaging – uses a powerful magnetic field to create detailed images of bones and soft tissue such as muscles.


This will save local residents having to be transported either into a private facility in the Bathurst central business district or to Orange for an MRI.


Mr Toole the Western NSW Local Health District’s Clinical Services Plan (CSP) for Bathurst has identified that the city will benefit from having an MRI service available on-site as the hospital expands in the range and complexity of the health services it offers.


“Developing an on-site MRI at Bathurst Hospital was strongly supported throughout the development of the CSP by a range of community groups, and I have been a strong champion for the new service,” Mr Toole said.


“The Commonwealth Government provides Medicare licences for MRI services in Australia, and an application for a Bathurst licence is in development by the Local Health District in readiness for the next round of Commonwealth applications to open.


“The LHD notified this formally to the Commonwealth last year during the Clinical Services Planning process for Bathurst and surrounding areas.”


Mr Toole said the Local Health District will also need to determine how the MRI, which requires a highly specialised space, can be accommodated on the Bathurst Health Service campus.


It is estimated that it will cost around $4 million to acquire the MRI and build its associated infrastructure.


The right location is critically important to how well the flow of patients occurs between the imaging department and critical care services such as the Emergency Department and Intensive Care Unit as well as allowing for easy outpatient access.


In 2019/20 the Bathurst Health Service had an expense budget of $80.7 million.