There’s a lot of debate on whether a higher CT slice automatically means a better CT scanner. On first glance, you would assume that a CT with a higher slice (64, 160, 320, etc), with more options and software capabilities, would be the most beneficial to your facility. But, as most things prove, it’s a bit more complicated than that. A 16 slice CT may be a better fit for you, but as you’ll soon see, it’s all about your specific requirements. Every imaging facility is different, after all!
There are several factors that go into the purchase of a CT scanner besides budget. You’ll need to do a complete run-down of your facilities patient studies, the CT studies you perform most often, your current CT system (if you have one) and what is lacking, and gather an in depth understanding of the CT market; looking at your competition and pricing for hospital sites, as well as non-hospital and imaging center sites.
Think about what you and your patients truly need, and try not to focus on fancy terms or new software for specialty studies unless it’s something you truly think will come into practice within your facility. Otherwise it’s possible to over buy, and since purchasing a CT is such a huge investment in time, planning, and finances, you want to get it right the first time.
Another thing to think about is that referrals for CT studies have been in decline as of late. Super advanced studies (such as “stop action” cardiac imaging, for example), are normally not what everyday CT scanning looks like in most imaging centers and hospitals. Purchasing a 320 slice CT scanner for a facility that doesn’t perform many advanced specialty studies on a regular basis wouldn’t be the most logical move.
In addition, there’s a lot more baggage and hidden costs that come with a higher sliced CT scanner, such as expensive OEM service contracts and “add ons” such as a tube contract, which will significantly increase cost.
That brings us to the reliable 16 slice CT scanner. When refurbished by a reputable company such as Amber Diagnostics, a 16 slice CT works just as beautifully as a sparkling brand new 16 slice CT. Your cost will be much less than purchasing a higher slice, and your 16 slice CT scanner can usually incorporate Low Dose technology such as SafeCT. A 16 slice CT scanner will be the shining star of your facility – able to accommodate select specialty studies without bloat, as well as the essential CT scans most commonly needed and performed in imaging facilities.
Of course, a 16 slice CT might even be too high of a slice for you if you’ve completed a market analysis and realized your facility can make do with a Dual Slice CT or 4 slice CT. Like I mentioned, it’s all about your specific practice’s needs. So on the other hand, if you do come the conclusion that a higher sliced CT would be best for you and your patients, it’s entirely plausible to find a refurbished system that will reduce cost, all while looking, sounding, and acting brand new.
There are plenty of options out there, and it’s best to consider them all in your CT purchasing journey. And we don’t expect you to go alone! That’s what Amber Diagnostics is here for. Let our dedicated imaging sales experts guide you in making the most informed and confident decision possible. Contact us today!