The average cost of an MRI scan in the US is $2,000. Why is this? In this blog we’ll go over the cost of an MRI machine by covering acquisition and all associated costs.
MRI scans are expensive because of the costs to acquire, operate, and maintain the MRI machine. Specifically, the total cost of an MRI machine includes:
- Delivery and installation of the equipment
- Machine operation costs
- Energy usage
- Maintenance, repair, and cost of spare parts that may be required for the device
So how much does an MRI machine cost to acquire? That depends on whether you’re purchasing from the primary or secondary market. MRIs have a 28% depreciation rate, so experienced buyers will usually shop for a good deal in the secondary market first. There are several companies and manufacturers offering refurbished MRI machines.
If you choose to buy a brand-new MRI however, there are only five MRI manufacturers and each company specializes in a few magnet strengths. This means there’s little competition in MRI machine price once you’ve decided on the magnet strength you need. These companies generally come in a variety of sizes and different powers. The imaging power of an MRI scanner is measured in a magnetic field strength called Teslas. Low-field or open MRI machines generally measure as 0.2 or 0.3 Teslas. On the other hand, the strongest MRIs in the market measure in 3 Teslas. Low-field MRI machines can cost anywhere from $150,000 to $1.2 million. A very efficient 3 Tesla MRI machine can cost up to $3 million.
You will also need a room large enough to accommodate your new MRI system. The room housing the MRI scanner is called an MRI suite. The MRI suite itself can cost thousands of dollars because of the necessary safety features built in to protect the individuals and equipment adjacent to the magnetic field.
Delivery and Installation
Delivery and installation of your MRI is a four-step process which makes up part of the total MRI machine cost. This includes: site inspection, de-installation, site planning, and final installation. Site planning is necessary due to federal and state regulations. Site planning considerations include: magnetic fringe fields, RF shielding, specified ceiling heights, minimal noise levels, cryogen storage, and adequate venting for cryogen exhaust. The whole process typically totals around $75,000 in the US.
MRI Machine Operation Costs
Part of the MRI cost is using the machine itself, as MRI procedures can be expensive to perform. Providing an MRI scan can cost anywhere from $90 to $200. The price depends on which procedure is performed, the facility’s location, and any available reimbursements.
The amount of energy used by an MRI machine depends on how powerful it is. Electricity rates for MRI systems can range anywhere from $50 to $3,000 per month. If total MRI cost is an issue, this is an expense that should be considered when choosing a device.
Maintenance and repairs
MRI scanners don’t have many movable parts so it’s unlikely that the machine would experience extensive damage. They are sensitive however, so monthly checkups are recommended to make sure there aren’t any radio frequency leaks and that the systems are clean and working properly. Maintenance agreements typically range from $2000 to $10,000 per month depending on how powerful the machine is. The price of maintaining an MRI machine may be high, but less so than buying a new one.
In the end, these estimated prices may vary according to the company you purchase from. Buying used or refurbished equipment helps lower the cost of medical imaging equipment significantly. Most importantly, it is vital for patient safety and adequate procedure performance to make sure buyers have sufficient information about the equipment before purchase.
The Amber Difference
Here at Amber Diagnostics, we’ve sold top quality refurbished MRI machines to organizations worldwide for 26 years. Our thoroughly inspected used equipment combined with our experienced engineers provides a solution for performance and return on investment.
No matter what your needs are, we have you covered with our wide range of MRI Equipment: Fixed MRI machines, Open MRI machines, Extremity MRI machines, Stand Up MRI machines, and Mobile MRI machines. All our equipment is from top MRI brands such as GE, Philips, Toshiba, Hitachi, Oni, and E-Saote.
We’re committed to our customers, so we offer Custom Warranty and Custom Financing solutions. Because the cost of an MRI machine is a main concern, all used MRI machines for sale can be custom reconditioned to fit your price range and technical requirements. The refurbishment process of used MRI equipment takes place in our 25,000 square foot warehouse for end to end service. Amber Diagnostics offers complete support from the moment you call us to delivery, site planning, installation, and any technical maintenance you may require.
To see our wide range of MRI Equipment, click here.
If you have any questions or concerns about purchasing an MRI machine feel free to email or call me. I can walk you through the process and help guide your project to completion. Thanks!
Nathan Welch | MRI & CT Specialist