Press Release – Waitemata District Health Board
Minimally invasive treatment options for a wide range of health conditions are now available locally for people in the Waitemata district.
Waitemata DHB officially launches its new advanced interventional radiology service this month with the opening of its $1.7 million Advanced Interventional Radiology Suite at North Shore Hospital.
“The move continues the expansion of services and facilities at our DHB, and is part of our aim to ensure that people living in our district have access to a wide range of treatments close to home,” says Dr Dale Bramley, Waitemata DHB CEO.
The new suite combines an angiography machine (used for imaging and treating blockages and narrowing of blood vessels) and operating theatre capability, allowing for a greater range of minimally invasive treatment possibilities. Up to 1500 patients are expected to be treated annually for diverse conditions ranging from tumours to internal bleeding following trauma.
The service is headed by endovascular specialist Dr John Bottomley, who returned home to Auckland after seven years at the Sheffield Vascular Institute – one of the largest vascular units in the United Kingdom.
“Interventional radiology makes use of the body’s network of hollow structures such as arteries and veins, bile ducts and gastrointestinal tracts – its highways and byways, if you like – to guide catheters and other medical devices directly to where they are needed,” says Dr Bottomley.
“The procedures are minimally invasive as they are performed percutaneously (via a pin hole). Risks of wound infection are negligible, recovery times are faster, and general anaesthetic is rarely required.”
The team of seven – which include medical radiation technologists and nurses – will be based on the first floor of North Shore Hospital, right next to the hospital’s operating theatres and intensive care unit.
“Our location is of tremendous benefit to both the patients and the clinicians managing acutely unwell patients,” says Dr Bottomley, “Having a theatre environment allows us to bring together multiple specialty groups – combining skills, knowledge and experience as well as leading edge imaging technology into one place.”
In future, it is envisaged that the service will develop into an expanded centre for interventional radiology, treating local patients for a broader range of conditions and becoming involved in newer technologies and research.
The new advanced interventional radiology service continues Waitemata DHB’s programme of expansion. New services and facilities added to the DHB over the past 18 months include:
A new emergency department and Assessment & Diagnostic Unit at North Shore Hospital
The 25-bed Lakeview Cardiology Centre housing a coronary care unit, step-down unit, cardiology ward and two cardiac catheterisation laboratories
A gestational diabetes service providing assessment and support for women without previously diagnosed diabetes who develop the condition during pregnancy
A Long Term Oxygen Therapy service providing assessment, education and support for adults and children requiring oxygen support in their own homes
An expanded paediatric unit at Waitakere Hospital, with ten additional beds, a new indoor playroom, an outdoor garden area, parent kitchen and negative pressure isolation room for children with infectious diseases
A new 1200 space carparking building at North Shore, significantly increasing parking capacity for the public and staff alike
The North Shore Dialysis Centre, providing in-centre renal dialysis for people with kidney failure
Eleven new school dental clinics, 15 transportable dental units and six mobile dental vans, providing state of the art oral health facilities for children and young adults in the district.
New Awhina Health Campus facilities at Waitakere Hospital in joint association with Unitec, providing greatly enhanced opportunities for learning, innovation and collaboration for staff and students in west Auckland.
Work is also underway on a new mental health facility, as well as the Elective Surgery Centre, a $39 million facility that will provide public elective surgical services faster and more efficiently.