Gauteng becomes first province to receive new MRI machines

MEC Qedani Mahlangu said she’s confident the new MRI scans will alleviate pressure at other hospitals.

A magnetic resonance imaging device (MRI) used in cancer treatment in the radiology department. Picture: EPA/Everett Kennedy Brown

JOHANNESBURG - Gauteng Health MEC Qedani Mahlangu said she's confident the new Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) scans at the Chris Hani Baragwaneth hospital, will alleviate pressure at other hospitals, and help deal with the current backlog.

The multi-million rand project was officially launched in December after faulty machinery saw some patients waiting for up to six weeks for scans at the hospital in Soweto.

About 1.5 metres long, grey and white in colour, a magnetic resonance imaging scan is used to produce detailed images of the inner body and help doctors detect internal problems.

Mahlangu said Gauteng has become the first province in the country to have the machines, which use strong magnetic fields and radio waves.

"The machines don't exist anywhere in South Africa. They are the latest technology that we have."

The MEC said the three machines would help with the backlog.

"Those that do scans can be done without waiting for many days."

The department said one of MRI machine cost around R32 million.