FUJIFILM Medical Systems USA, Inc. and General Electric provided more than $100,000 worth of equipment for CSUN’s Radiologic Sciences Program. The equipment will allow faculty and students to use advanced digital imaging technology, which is critical to the study of radiology.
Radiology is a medical specialization that uses radiant energy to capture the inner image of a dense object, such as the human body. Medical treatments like X-rays, ultrasounds and magnetic resonance imaging require techniques in radiology.
It is a significant component in diagnosing patients who suffer from internal injuries – even broken bones. Carefully controlled exposure of radioactive substances to the patient is at the core of radiology.
The Radiologic Sciences Program at CSUN is one of several programs offered by the university’s Department of Health Sciences.
The program’s objective is to train students in the craft of radiology. In order for the clinical education requirement to be satisfied, students must first complete the minimum 2,600-hour requirement.
Anita Slechta, radiologic sciences program director, said until the badly needed donation was received, CSUN’s laboratory had not been able to take advantage of advanced radiological equipment.
“The radiation technology never had a working radiation lab until now,” she said.
The donation consisted of advanced computer imaging equipment, including software. General Electric sold X-ray equipment to the department for about half the actual cost.
“This is top-of-the-line technical equipment,” Slechta said.
Bachelor of science graduates in the radiologic sciences program are educated in a variety of specialized imaging procedures, including computer tomograghy and cardiovascular imaging.
Both companies have already set up the supplied equipment in the laboratory. They have also provided training for faculty and graduate students to further understand the value of their new advantage.
“Now we can do the types of education that we need here before we send students out to affiliate medical centers,” Slechta said.
The new equipment will allow the capture of images without the use of film, which is typically required to make images. Slechta said the image captured with the equipment is sent to a computer where technicians can manipulate the image to a position desired for examination. The image is also sent to surrounding computers in the area.
“We can now have students working in the lab before they can go out and work with patients,” she said, adding that the contribution would vastly improve patient care for students who are taking their clinical education.
“Students can practice here at the laboratory before they can go have patients on the table,” she said.
Junior radiologic technology major Jennifer Mora said the laboratory would now extend students’ internship experience.
“We do get a lot of experience during our internship, but having the actual equipments supplements the experience,” Mora said.
Students will now develop more ideas and techniques in X-rays as well as supplementing class lectures, she said.
“It makes us more comfortable with real patients because we can have an idea of how it’s going to be in the actual field,” Mora said.