With 64 standing equine MRI systems installed across five continents, Hallmarq Veterinary Imaging takes its commitment to customer training seriously to ensure every horse gets the best possible diagnostic examination.
Application Scientist Dan Mountifield regularly checks images from each scanner, and every six months compiles a report giving the customer an assessment of image quality.
Said Dan: “Customers take great pride in their scans. As well as image quality we measure indicators such as the average time it takes to scan a horse, and the amount of horse movement, and all our customers are keen to know how they compare to other Hallmarq scanners around the world.”
When Hallmarq installs a new scanner, a four day training course is setup for the scanner operators.
The MRI machines can be run by vets, technicians, nurses, or radiographers trained on human MRI. Anyone paying meticulous attention to detail and taking pride in their work can run the scanner.
Hallmarq organise annual refresher courses, offering additional training to help ensure all staff are fully trained in using the MRI.
This is especially helpful if there is a change in clinic staff, and if new operators join a veterinary practice.
This year’s UK course in Newbury was so over-subscribed that a second course was quickly organised for European customers near Cologne in Germany. A third course in the USA, at a clinic near Denver, completed the year’s programme.
A total of 26 Hallmarq sites learned about topics from MR physics to horse sedation while also covering scanning live horses and moving up from the foot to the fetlock joint and above.
Even with regular training, there are times when Hallmarq customers can find themselves without anyone available to operate the scanner.
This is not a problem for Hallmarq as every system has been configured for remote access over the internet with the UK based Hallmarq facility able to log into the scanner and operate it efficiently.
Such a situation occurred at Fairfield Equine in Connecticut, USA, when acute appendicitis recently struck the clinic’s most experienced operator, thankfully the senior partner knew who to call.
Straight away Dan was able to log in and help the customer set up for the scan. The following morning, when the horse arrived, Dan was on-line in the UK, remotely running the scanner in the USA. This resulted in one carefully scanned horse, one set of high quality images, and a happy customer.
Said Dr Rick Mitchell, FEI vet and partner at Fairfield Equine in Connecticut:
“This is a perfect example of why we deal with a professional organisation such as Hallmarq.”
Hallmarq aim not only to provide MRI systems to accurately diagnose lame horses, but to keep equine professionals up-to-date with technological advancements and offer the best customer service possible.
For further information contact Hallmarq Veterinary Imaging on (01483) 877812 or visit www.hallmarq.net.