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Health chiefs hail delivery of new hospital scanner for Royal Belfast Hospital for Sick Children

By Claire McNeilly

This picture shows a new MRI scanner being delivered to the Royal Belfast Hospital for Sick Children.

The Health and Social Care Board (HSCB) welcomed its arrival and said it would be capable of providing almost 2,500 scans a year.

It also said it hoped the new equipment - which was installed by crane yesterday - will "greatly improve access to much needed scans for children and young people in Northern Ireland".

The HSCB has committed funding up to £400,000 this year for the running of the service, growing to £1m from 2016/17.

The new scanner will also free up the existing MRI scanner for adult services, meaning an extra 3,500 scans a year can be taken across both machines.

Magnetic resonance imaging is a type of scan that uses strong magnetic fields and radio waves to produce detailed images of the inside of the body. The scanner should be operational within two months and will be used in the diagnosis of a wide range of medical conditions, including cancer.

The multi-million pound investment has been partly funded by charitable donations.

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