Equipment for Surgery
In 2006, the Health Care Foundation focused much of its fundraising efforts in support of the Ears, Nose, and Throat (ENT) Program. This program specializes in the diagnosis and treatment of ear, nose and throat disorders and related head and neck cancers. It is a challenging medical specialty. In Newfoundland and Labrador, we are fortunate to have a team of ENT surgeons who are known internationally for their expertise.
It had been many years since the ENT Program received significant funding for medical equipment and technology. Through the generous support of our donors - with a special mention to the St. Clare's Auxiliary - we raised nearly a half a million dollars for ENT equipment, including:
Image Guided Navigation System
Our ENT program is now one of the only ENT centres in Canada to use a state-of-the art technology called the Image Guided Navigation System. This computer-aided equipment provides surgeons with a 3D, visual guide of the inside of a patient's head. It enables surgeons to operate with great precision and accuracy as they navigate the delicate areas between the optic nerves, brain and blood vessels. Quite simply, ENT surgeons can now "see" as they do head surgeries. It provides a safer, and often, less invasive, treatment for many head and neck cancers and disorders. Our ENT program is one of the few in Canada to have this innovative technology.
C02 Laser Equipment
C02 Laser Equipment enables ENT specialists to perform minimally-invasive surgical procedures, and is particularly effective for the removal of larynx and pharynx cancers, where surgeons can operate through the mouth instead of open surgery. Laser surgery for these conditions offers far superior results from a rehabilitative perspective. Patients who would likely have lost most of their speech or voice with conventional surgery are speaking. Swallowing is preserved in patients who would have lost this function previously. Laser surgery also reduces hospitalization and significantly reduces recovery times compared to open surgery. This equipment is also a "first" for our province.
Endoscopic & Surgical Equipment
Endoscopes are tubes that are inserted through the mouth or nose and contain a light, and often a camera, that illuminates the area for visibility and provides images from inside the head and neck. They enable ENT specialists to look for abnormalities such as bleeding, inflammation or foreign objects.
MedBridge Interpretation System - A First in Canada
Four years ago, the Health Care Foundation purchased a small, but important piece of equipment to improve patient communication - a Medbridge Interpretation System. This is a hand-held computer that reduces language barriers between health care providers and patients. Dr. Rick Singleton, the director of pastoral care for the General Hospital says, "This user-friendly technology truly is a bridge for patients who do not speak English or who are deaf. We are delighted to be the first health care centre in Canada to offer this service to our growing culturally diverse population."