Sequoyah Memorial Hospital in Sallisaw recently received a $125,000 grant from the Susan G. Komen Foundation to install digital mammography. At the presentation are, from the left, Dr. Jennifer Scoufos, hospital chief of staff; Debbie Knoke, hospital administrator; Pam Ballard, Komen Foundation CEO; John Cripps, hospital board chairman; Roger Sharp, hospital board trustee; Dustin Walters, manager at Walmart, which is also a donor; Julian ‘Poncho’ Mendiola, Sallisaw Ward 3 City Commissioner; Beth Fair, hospital director of radiology; and Kim Ellis, Amy Walters and Amy Nichols, hospital radiology technicians.
Sequoyah Memorial Hospital hopes to have new digital mammography equipment installed and operational by this summer, said Beth Fair, the hospital’s director of radiology.
The hospital received a $125,000 grant from the Susan G. Komen Foundation recently to purchase the equipment. Pam Ballard, Komen Foundation CEO, presented the grant.
Fair said digital mammography images will be interpreted by the radiologists much faster and digital imaging reduces the patient call back rate. The images may be viewed on computer and lightened and darkened to enhance the image.
Fair said, “The incidence of breast cancer in our region of the state is three times the national average. Each year, Diagnostic Imaging and Associates analyze the mammogram outcome data from SMH and have determined this for several years.”
The Sallisaw hospital does about 700 mammograms a year, Fair said.
She explained that three technologists at SMH are trained and certified to perform mammograms through specialty education and training by the American Registry of Radiologic Technologists. The total years of technologists experience in the SMH Imaging department is about 80 years.
Fair said the total cost for the new digital mammography equipment is $300,000, and the remainder of the cost will be covered by other donors and memorial funds, city sales tax funds, and potential other grants.
Sally Maxwell, Senior News Director
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