Gorilla Jobs Logo

How the Medical Imaging Industry Grew in 2019

July 24, 2019 0 Comments

It is estimated more than 9 million Australians use diagnostic imaging services each year. For a variety of reasons including X-rays, ultrasounds, mammograms, CT scans, echocardiograms and image guided procedures.

Medical Imaging Key Points of Growth

More than 9 Million Australians use diagnostic imaging services yearly

All of us will have various reasons to need access to imaging services. Some of the most common reasons include X-rays, Ultrasounds, Mammograms, Scans and Echocardiograms.

Ultrasound has been used to capture the first breaths of premature babies

In Melbourne they have successfully caught the first breaths ever of premature babies using ultrasounds, a great step forward in research to understand the breathing patterns of these babies.

Research and funding have been introduced for Artificial Intelligence (AI) in medical imaging

Diagnostic neuroimaging has research, funding and newly written guidelines to support the use of Artificial Intelligence to a help with patients that have brain ailments.

RANZCR released clinical guidelines in radiology to better align it with the digital health sector

These guidelines have been introduced by the College (RANZCR) to shed light on areas radiology can work closely together with digital health sector.

Nursing homes in parts of SA have had Mobile X-Ray services introduced

New mobile X-ray services in parts of South Australia have been introduced for nursing homes, reducing the need for out-of-pocket expenses for the patients and easing the pressure for the local Ambulance services.

50 more units for MRI and PET scans were provided by the government and future indexation announced on the Medicare Benefits Scheme

The Federal government invested in new units for state-of-the-art Scans across Australia and has announced Medicare indexation for a majority of Radiology and X-ray services.

MRI scan machine

We have talked to many skilled providers in recent months and have heard about the daily challenges and successes to provide all those services. Looking back a year, we can see interesting advancements being announced and studies to push medical imaging to the future.

Last year, the Royal Women’s Hospital in Melbourne together with Monash University successfully managed to perform ultrasounds on premature born babies in the Newborn Intensive Care Unit and captured their first breaths ever. It was a special moment for the research scientists and doctors involved who wanted to find out whether the lungs of these babies functioned differently. More findings on this will come in the near future.

Diagnostic neuroimaging for patients with brain ailments had research and funding awarded by the Federal government and contributing partners to incorporate commercial uses for AI in the medical imaging industry. Artificial Intelligence could use accurate de-identified data to create algorithms and influence the treatments for individual patients. Guidelines will also be included to measure the extent to what AI can access and help us with so that it has its own place in the industry.

And speaking of having a place in the industry, more recently the Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Radiologists (RANZCR) published a clinical response with guidelines focused on improving the National Health Interoperability. The guidelines are published around aligning Radiology with the broader digital health sector and improving ways both sides work together in the healthcare industry.

Nursing home residents in parts of SA can also benefit from the recent introduction of Mobile Imaging X-Ray services. South Australia generally has busy ED departments and nursing homes in some areas are requiring the Ambulance service to assist with transferring patients to and from hospitals for X-rays.

The performance of this new initiative will be closely monitored in the coming months, as the benefits of this successfully rolling out will immensely help. The ED and Ambulance services will have pressures eased off them and the nursing home residents will have no out-of-pocket expenses and better access to X-ray services.

X ray of a hand

Looking at the year ahead, we aim to keep you updated on future findings and advancements. One particular area to keep a close eye on is the Medicare situation for diagnostic imaging. In the past year the government has provided over 50 more units across Australia providing access to state-of-the-art technology in MRI and PET scans. From next year it also aims to index diagnostic radiology and x-ray up to 92% of diagnostic imaging, providing affordable access to bulk billing and reduced out of pocket expenses for a wide range of patients.

While this change is not anticipated until mid-2020, it will be good to start planning ahead in case it leads to any drastic changes to your current role.

Gorilla Jobs can put you in touch with a vast network of medical imaging providers looking for qualified and friendly Radiologists, Radiographers and Sonographers. Speak to our Senior Consultant Judith Butcher and find out whether you need any career and recruitment advice to help you navigate through the positions available and most suited to your situation.

As our 2nd anniversary is approaching in September, the Medical Imaging division is one of our own personal achievements in the past year.

This week’s Gorilla Update also includes news for our Doctors and Pharmacy divisions. We also have more on our Blogs page. The latest Imaging Jobs can be found on our website and by signing up for our mailing list.