Sonoma Valley Hospital to open new diagnostics center

Sonoma Valley Hospital will be opening a new diagnostics center this month that will include a state-of-the-art CT scanner and upgraded public areas.|

Sonoma Valley Hospital is opening a new Outpatient Diagnostics Center this month that will include a state-of-the-art, 128-slice CT scanner and a more comfortable waiting area.

Set to receive its first patients on Monday, Aug. 22, the center also will receive upgrades to other public areas.

The new CT unit offers high-quality diagnostic scans at speeds that will shorten the process for patients.

“We are grateful to the Sonoma Valley Hospital Foundation (SVHF) and its capital campaign team, along with the many generous donors who have made this new service a reality for our community,” said John Hennelly, CEO of Sonoma Valley Hospital (SVH), in a news release. “It allows us to provide advanced diagnostics while supporting our efforts to provide our community with the finest emergency care.”

David Pier, executive director of the SVHF, lauded the contributions of community members.

“We are very excited to have phase 1 of the diagnostic center become a reality for our hospital,” he said. “The community responded generously to the needs of SVH with over $21 million in support of this project and the advanced imaging capabilities will have a lasting impact on the health care of our Valley for many years to come. Our hospital is truly one of, for, and by our community of Sonoma.”

The CT scanner and upgraded public areas are included in the first phase of development at the center. The second and final phase will include a new 3 Tesla MRI, updated ultrasound and X-ray equipment, and updated space and equipment for cardiology and laboratory services. This phase is scheduled for completion by early 2024.

Construction on the center was delayed as a result of COVID-19 restrictions, as well as the need to address unexpected complications in construction, Hennelly said.

Hennelly said the new diagnostic center will help the hospital’ attract more patients from beyond Sonoma Valley. Financial projections show that when fully operational, the diagnostic center should increasing hospital net revenues by $1.5 million annually, partly because physicians no longer will no to refer patients outside of Sonoma Valley for advanced diagnostic care.

The center also will strengthen the hospital’s affiliation with UCSF Health and allow it to play a larger role in University of California, San Francisco’s Bay Area network. UCSF has committed to use SVH as its diagnostic center for its patients in the North Bay, Hennelly said, boosting revenue at the local hospital.

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