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Ground Broken for MRI Expansion at Lincoln City Hospital

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It was a chilly, rainy day but that didn’t dampen the enthusiasm as Samaritan North Lincoln Hospital broke ground Monday on a 2,500-square-foot MRI addition. 

“Our replacement hospital opened in February 2020 and was designed for future expansion as needed,” said hospital CEO Lesley Ogden, MD. “Soon after opening our lovely new facility, it became apparent that we really did need to update our MRI so we could continue to offer top-of-the-line diagnostic and treatment imaging services to our community. Today, I am pleased to report that nearly all needed funding has been secured and we are ready to proceed with this important project.”

Attending the groundbreaking ceremony were representatives from Gerding Builders, North Lincoln Health District, North Lincoln Hospital Foundation and Samaritan North Lincoln Hospital. 

Project Supported by Generous Contributions

 Project costs total $4.3 million. This includes approximately $1 million to purchase the Siemens Magnetom Altea-KMAT open bore MRI system and $3.3 million for design/construction by Gerding Builders, LLC. Construction begins in January and will be done by early summer 2022.

Project contributions include two gifts totaling $1.33 million from the tax-supported North Lincoln Health District, a $250,000 grant from the M.J. Murdock Charitable Trust, and additional generous donations and pledges from community members and Samaritan staff totaling nearly $1.73 million. Fundraising has been spearheaded by North Lincoln Hospital Foundation.

Dr. Ogden pointed out that when project planning began, the total cost was anticipated to be around $2 million but with inflationary construction costs, that price has doubled to $4 million.

Advantages of New MRI and Expansion

The new MRI will be conveniently located and connected to the north side of the hospital near the Emergency Department. The addition will blend seamlessly with the interior and exterior design, and it will include separate restroom facilities for all patients and visitors. 

This expansion has another benefit: Heat generated by the MRI magnet can be captured in the hospital’s chilled water system and converted into heating or cooling, reducing hospital energy consumption. 

On an average day, Samaritan North Lincoln Hospital performs six outpatient MRI scans and two inpatient/emergency MRI scans. MRI is a medical imaging technique that uses a magnetic field and computer-generated radio waves to create detailed images of the organs and tissues inside the body. 

MRI services have been offered at SNLH for many years. The current GE MRI equipment has reached the end of its service life and is located in an ancillary building on campus, away from the new hospital.

For information about the MRI project and how you can contribute, contact the North Lincoln Hospital Foundation at nschaefer@samhealth.org.