01 Mar Munising Memorial’s Radiology and Laboratory Departments
Services You Can Trust at Your Hometown Hospital
Access to healthcare services can be challenging for those living in remote areas like the Upper Peninsula as people are often forced to travel for appointments and procedures. Fortunately, with its centralized location, Munising Memorial Hospital has a highly trained staff and state of the art technology, ensuring people don’t have to go far to receive quality care.
MMH is a nonprofit hospital that has primary care providers currently accepting new patients. Did you know that you can get lab work and imaging done at MMH even if your care provider is located elsewhere?
With recent upgrades in both the laboratory and radiology departments and an enthusiastic and knowledgeable staff, here is why these are services you can trust at MMH:
The Laboratory Department
MMH’s highly trained laboratory staff consists of four board certified laboratory scientists and technicians as well as a team of medical assistants and phlebotomists that provide accurate and timely results for routine and stat testing.
MMH Laboratory offers a full service of testing, including:
- Blood Bank
“We have a high focus on accurate collection and maintaining specimen integrity,” said Lab Manager Rikki Ake.
Last year, our chemistry department got a new immunoassay analyzer that has over 65 different tests. We have also been able to upgrade all our analyzers in the past 5 years and are planning for new additions in the future.
“Many of our inhouse routine panels are ran daily so results can be delivered to your provider prior to appointments,” Ake said.
Once test results are completed, they are submitted to an online server that is used by hospitals throughout the U.P. The patient’s file can be easily accessed if they are admitted to the emergency department or are seen by another provider. This allows less duplicate testing which saves on overall healthcare costs.
MMH also partners with top notch reference labs, ensuring efficient and accurate results.
“We utilize UP Health System’s laboratory that works closely with some of the top reference labs in the country. Orders from specialists and physicians are often collected here at MMH and the sample is sent back to large health systems’ own labs for analysis. The lab department takes pride in collaborating with physicians who maintain the health of the Alger County community.
“I think one of the biggest benefits is that people don’t have to travel for accurate and reliable results,” Ake said. “We can be trusted here at MMH to handle the healthcare needs of our friends and family in our community. We also have a close working relationship with Putvin Drug Store and other home health services in Alger County. The lab is open Monday – Friday from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. for walk-in specimen collection and on Saturday and Sunday by appointment only.”
The Radiology Department
Munising Memorial was recently awarded two grants totaling $313,000 to upgrade equipment in its radiology department. According to Imaging Director Kevin Salo, Jesse Webster, an Ultrasound Technician at the hospital, applied for the grants.
One of the items the grant will fund is a new portable digital X-Ray machine, which was installed this month, replacing 13-year-old equipment.
“We’ll be able to see the image immediately right on the machine,” Salo said. “It’ll especially be helpful when doing a tube placement.”
This summer, the hospital will install a new CT scanner giving them the ability to offer computed tomography angiography (CTA) tests. These tests use an injection of contrast material to help diagnose and evaluate blood vessel disease or related conditions, such as aneurysms or blockages.
Overall, the radiology department offers “head to toe” scans. Appointments are not necessary for general X-Rays but are required for other imaging.
MMH Radiology diagnostic imaging services include:
- General X-ray
- Fluoroscopy Studies
- Multi-Detector C.T.
- 3D Ultrasound
- 3D Digital Mammography
- Bone Densitometry
- US guided biopsies
“One of our strongest points is we can schedule you for an appointment and perform the exam within three days for almost any exam instead of waiting up to several weeks, which is common for larger facilities,” Salo said. “Since we’re located in a small town, we don’t have the same patient volume so we can take patients much sooner.”
While the radiology department can push images directly to other facilities such as Mayo Clinic, University of Michigan, University of Wisconsin and others, they’ve recently contracted with a secure, cloud-based third party called Pocket Health, expanding their capabilities.
By using Pocket Health, people can easily access their imaging records online and share with physicians for continuation of care.
“We fax an Access Page to a provider or facility that allows them to download a patient’s images and reports instantly,” Salo said. “It eliminates the process of burning CDs and sending them to outside facilities.”
Similar to the laboratory, if a patient sees a provider from an outside facility, their provider can send an order to MMH and have their imaging done locally, reducing travel time.
The radiology department is open from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday – Friday, and is staffed 24/7 for emergency situations. An order from a provider is required for all laboratory or radiology services.