High in demand at hospitals in light of the coronavirus pandemic
The novel coronavirus has brought about drastic changes in the radiology departments in hospitals in general, so the companies involved in the production and manufacture of medical imaging devices have been ready to fight this pandemic by enhancing their production capacity and producing mobile X-ray devices that limit the movement of patients and communication with them. X-rays can be performed near the patient’s bed while obtaining a high-quality clinical image.
Most hospitals, especially those specialized in receiving coronavirus patients, realized the key presence of mobile imaging devices and proceeded to acquire them since the beginning of the crisis, that is, during the first quarter of this year. It was obvious that they definitely needed this type of medical imaging devices for early diagnosis of Covid-19 patients and to follow-up on their condition.
In response to keeping pace with the coronavirus pandemic and the precautionary measures it imposed, medical imaging companies have doubled their production of mobile devices that allow the radiologist to photograph the patient and diagnose his condition while in bed without the need to transfer him to another room and expose others to the risks of spreading the infection, especially in advanced cases in intensive care and the difficulty of transporting the patient to the imaging department.
Mobile medical imaging is an urgent need today in light of the pandemic outbreak, which prompted manufacturers to increase their production capacities in order to manufacture portable imaging devices. The radiologist brings the imaging device to the side of the patient’s bed whenever needed and obtains high-resolution digital images.
Mobile X-ray devices have been at the forefront of devices used to care for coronavirus patients and diagnose their condition, taking into account prevention factors, as this device can be used in several places within the hospital, such as the emergency room, intensive care units, isolation and quarantine departments, and even regular rooms. This type of imaging device has facilitated the possibility of transferring the device from one department to another within the hospital or even from one hospital to another, according to the diagnostic needs, provided that sterilization is one of the basic conditions for the transfer of the device in order to preserve the safety of the radiologist, the patient, and other healthcare providers within the hospital.
In light of the application of social and physical distancing, mobile devices have thus provided effective solutions to reduce the spread of infection, as medical imaging has been available at the side of the patient’s bed, which was of great importance for coronavirus patients on the one hand and facilitated the work of healthcare providers on the other hand at a time when they are in dire need of this type of support in light of the overcrowding in coronavirus departments and the extent of the risk of infection transmission.
Manufacturers have been able to introduce several features to such devices in order to help reduce contamination and to be smoothly sterilized after each use allowing the radiologist to use them again quickly, between one patient and another. Those companies were also keen to take into account the easy transportation of the device, as it was designed to be small and lightweight.
Portable digital X-ray devices are used extensively to monitor the condition of pneumonia patients that coronavirus patients suffer from, after the device is placed at the side of the bed, allowing it to be used in emergency rooms and in the intensive care unit.
This type of digital radiography has several benefits, such as providing faster and less expensive imaging services than other methods, with the same accuracy and quality, which makes it an effective alternative to a fixed radiography room, allowing the radiologist to bring the device to the patient instead of having to bring the patient to the device.
Bringing the device to the side of the patient greatly helps in saving effort, time and fear of transmitting infection in serious Covid-19 cases, which will positively affect the increase in efficiency in the workflow and the protection of everyone in the hospital. In addition, the easy-to-use device in several hospital departments is very important in reducing the spread of infection. The use of this type of imaging device requires strict conditions. Firstly, the radiologist must wear personal protective equipment (PPE) and take the utmost precautionary measures of sterilization and others, and then apply the highest level of cleaning, sterilization and disinfection to all parts of the device and surfaces.