NewsRSNA and GE HealthCare Bring Advanced Mammography Technology to Tanzania

RSNA and GE HealthCare Bring Advanced Mammography Technology to Tanzania

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Chicago- April 2024- The Radiological Society of North America (RSNA) and GE HealthCare announced their collaboration to provide mammography technology, training and educational tools to radiologists at Muhimbili National Hospital (MNH), part of the Muhimbili University of Health and Sciences (MUHAS), in Tanzania to improve access to screening and help clinicians lower the country’s breast cancer mortality rate.

First Working Mammography Machine

MNH at MUHAS is a public hospital serving Dar es Salaam, the largest city in Tanzania, and did not have a working mammography machine. For women in Tanzania, breast cancer is the second leading cause of cancer mortality, with more than 80% of diagnoses happening at stage III or IV when the odds of long-term survivability are much lower. Additionally, the lifetime risk for developing breast cancer is approximately one in twenty, and approximately half of all women diagnosed with breast cancer in the country die of the disease.

Breast cancer is the most common cancer among women worldwide, affecting both developed and developing countries. Its impact transcends borders, cultures, and socioeconomic backgrounds. To help improve radiology education and patient care around the world, RSNA developed the Global Learning Center (GLC) program that works to create learning centers with established radiology departments based in low- or middle-resourced countries, like Tanzania. Through this program, a team of RSNA members works with the institution over three years to develop a customized curriculum with in-person, hands-on training, didactic lectures, conferences, online courses and other education offerings. The RSNA GLC program includes MUHAS and receives funding from a grant provided by the U.S. Department of Energy’s National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA).

Also Read: What Does GE Healthcare’s MIM Software Acquisition Mean for Your Next Scan?

What does the New Agreement Say

As part of the new agreement, GE HealthCare will install the Pristina Mammography Suite, which includes 2D and 3D digital breast tomosynthesis, Contrast Enhanced Mammography (CEM), CEM Biopsy capabilities and a Seno Iris workstation, at MUHAS, as well as provide maintenance of the system at no charge to the university.

Approximately twenty nurses, radiologists, and techs will operate the mammography suite. Live trainings under the grant will cover operation of the system, image interpretation, patient care, video tutorials, case study learning, engagement of physicians in a peer learning network and, upon course completion, a GE HealthCare-issued certification.

In addition to improving the level of radiologic practice and breast care throughout the region, the collaboration between GE HealthCare, MUHAS and RSNA will also work to raise awareness about the importance of breast cancer screening and early detection among Tanzanians.

“GE HealthCare is committed to helping reduce disparities in care and improving access to medical imaging worldwide. One of the ways we honor this commitment is through our continued pursuit of innovative imaging technology. Another way we honor this commitment is by working with organizations, like RSNA, to leverage our different strengths and engage the global community to help break down barriers to care,” said Jan Makela – President and CEO of Imaging at GE HealthCare.

“RSNA’s Global Learning Center program was designed to expand radiology education across the world and foster international collaborations. Through this collaboration with GE HealthCare, we are able to work with local stakeholders at Muhimbili National Hospital to advance a breast imaging curriculum, provide in-person hands-on training in mammography, and offer online courses, technical assistance and virtual support,” said Umar Mahmood, M.D., Ph.D. – chair of the RSNA Board of Directors.

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