A CT scan of a Covid patient at the Maison Médical du Parc in Toulouse. - MM of the Park

  • With the health crisis, many patients were afraid to go to medical places to carry out their examinations for fear of being infected.
  • In Toulouse, to avoid two patients crossing, a radiology center has dedicated a scanner to suspected or proven cases of Covid and set up a "drive".
  • A way to unclog the hospital and reassure patients.

With the systematic screening of contact cases, virological tests carried out in “drive” have multiplied on French territory. A way to carry out nasopharyngeal samples without having to get out of your car, in an outdoor space to limit the spread of the virus.

This system has spread to the point of giving ideas to radiologists at the Maison Médical du Parc in Toulouse. During the confinement period, many patients indeed ordered the scanner that they had planned to do for fear of being contaminated by the coronavirus. An apprehension that still persists among some of them.

To avoid any risk and to reassure, these radiologists decided to offer a “drive” system dedicated to patients who are positive for Covid-19 or suspected of being so. “The appointment can be made within 48 hours via his doctor, especially in case of suspicion, because the scanner remains one of the most effective exams to confirm or rule out (the diagnosis). We have therefore reserved time slots in the evening for this specific activity on a scanner which also allows the monitoring of affected patients and who continue to have symptoms, ”explains Doctor Christian Quesnel.

They arrive by car and once parked, they call a number. The radio manipulator then comes to look for them without crossing other patients, the two scanners are in rooms isolated from each other, the one reserved for the Covid being ventilated on the outside.

No more waiting

Informed of the dress they have to wear, they go directly to the scanner, without having to wait in a waiting room with other patients with another pathology. They no longer need to go through reception either to settle administrative formalities, all done in a paperless manner. They then wait in their car for a quarter of an hour to get the results.

This innovative device was only possible by the urgent installation of a second scanner in partnership with the supplier GE Healthcare and the Regional Health Agency. “Usually, we did 70 scans a day, but in mid-March, with confinement and sanitary measures, we increased to 10 to 15 patients per day. We quickly saw the major role of the scanner in confirming Covid's cases and the role that city medicine could play in relieving the hospital and taking care of patients who were told to stay at home. We then took steps to recover a scanner that we had just dismantled a month earlier, ”says the radiologist.

With two scanners in operation, the radiology center takes care of as many patients as with a single device before the crisis. Times have indeed doubled to take care of the patient, in particular due to the health protocol and the cleaning of the premises which can take more than a quarter of an hour in the event of confirmation of a case of Covid-19 .


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