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Chance To Find Out More About Scans And X-Rays


New Zealand Institute of Medical Radiation Technology (NZIMRT)

MEDIA RELEASE

20 August 2002

Open days offer great chance to find out more about scans and x-rays

If you've ever wondered how injuries or cancer are diagnosed or cancer is treated with radiation, the New Zealand Institute of Medical Radiation Technology (NZIMRT) is holding open days at x-ray and radiation therapy departments nationwide to give a glimpse behind the scenes.

NZIMRT president Jo Anson says the Institute is organising the open days to satisfy public curiosity, reassure future patients and attract more people to careers as medical radiation technologists (MRTs) or radiation therapists (RT).

"You'll be surprised by what we can show you," says Ms Anson, a radiation therapist at Palmerston North Hospital.

"Many New Zealanders will end up meeting an RT or MRT when they are coping with an injury or cancer. Open days give people the chance to view our machines and also ask questions about issues like treating cancer with radiation without the stress that normally accompanies being a patient."

Open days are being held in Whangarei, Auckland, Manukau, Hamilton, Thames, Whakatane, Palmerston North, Masterton, Wellington, Christchurch, Dunedin and Invercargill.

The open days come as the Institute holds its first-ever national awareness day on August 26. The Institute is the professional body for MRTs and RTs - health professionals with a lot in common. The main difference is that MRTs help diagnose injury or illness, while RTs are involved in treating cancer.

The media has highlighted New Zealand's major shortage of RTs but there is also a shortage of MRTs.

"It's an exciting time for both professions as technology leaps ahead. While we're embracing these developments, the importance of the human touch is essential so RTs and MRTs also need to be caring and understanding people."

The open days are also a great opportunity to see the vast range of diagnostic tests under the Medical Radiation Technology umbrella. Most people have an x-ray at some stage, and maybe even an ultrasound or CT scan, but other diagnostic tests such as Nuclear Medicine and MRI (magnetic resonance imaging) scans will also be on show.

The open days are co-sponsored by the National Screening Unit. The unit manages and co-ordinates BreastScreen Aotearoa, who use MRTs to carry out mammograms. The open days also provide a chance for women to find out more about what happens during a mammogram and why.

ENDS

You're invited to open days at:

· Whangarei Hospital X-ray Department on Sunday August 25 from 1-3pm

· Auckland Hospital's Radiology Department, Radiation Therapy Department in the Oncology Unit on Sunday August 25, 11am-3pm

· Starship Hospital's Radiology Department on Sunday August 25, 11am-3pm

· St Mark's Breast Centre, 101 St Marks Rd, Remuera on Sunday August 25, 11am-3pm

· Manukau Superclinic X-ray Department on Saturday August 24 from 9am-1pm

· Waikato Hospital Radiology Department on Sunday August 25 from 12-4pm

· Waikato BreastCare Centre, Waikato Hospital on Saturday August 24, 11-2pm, Tuesday August 27, 2-6pm and Thursday August 29, 2-6pm

· Thames Hospital X-ray Department on Sunday August 25 from 11am-2pm and Monday August 26 from 2-5pm

· Whakatane Hospital X-ray Department on Monday, August 26 from 4-6pm

· Palmerston North Hospital Radiation Therapy Department in the Regional Cancer Treatment Service building on Saturday August 24 from 9-12am

· Masterton Hospital X-ray Department on Sunday 25 August from 1-3pm

· Wellington Hospital Radiology Department on Sunday August 25 from 10am-2pm

· Radiation Therapy Department in the Wellington Cancer Centre, Wellington Hospital on Sunday August 25 from 10am-2pm

· Hutt Hospital Radiology Department on Sunday August 25 from 10am-2pm

· BreastScreen Central at Hutt Hospital on Sunday August 25 from 10am-2pm

· Christchurch's Southern Cross Radiology, 129 Bealey Ave on Saturday August 31 from 2-4pm

· Dunedin Hospital's Radiology Department, Radiation Therapy Service in the Oncology and Haematology Department on Sunday August 25 from 2-4pm

· Invercargill Hospital X-Ray Department on Monday August 26 from 5-7pm followed by a careers evening from 7-8pm.


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