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Alexandria VA Pineville Healthcare System Becomes First VA Medical Center to Offer Unique Philips Ingenia MRI with in-bore Ambient Experience

August 16, 2016

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New MRI suite designed for imaging and fast workflow, while enhancing the patient experience

Pineville, LA and Andover, MA – Alexandria VA Medical Center (VAMC) and Royal Philips (NYSE: PHG; AEX: PHIA) announced today that the VAMC’s Pineville, LA facility will be the first VA site to adopt the Philips Ingenia 1.5T Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) with in-bore Ambient Experience technology. The state-of-the-art clinical suite offers a soothing patient experience with imagery, sound and light, helping to put patients at ease.

The Alexandria VAMC offers comprehensive acute and extended healthcare in areas of medicine, surgery, psychiatry, physical medicine and rehabilitation, oncology, dentistry, geriatrics and extended care. The VAMC serves a potential veteran population of over 100,000 veterans, including community-based services at Fort Polk, Jennings, Lafayette, Lake Charles and Natchitoches, as well as an active patient roster of over 32,000 patients.

Unlike traditional X-rays, magnetic resonance imaging does not use ionizing radiation to provide high quality images of the body, and includes contrast detail of soft tissue and anatomic structures like gray and white matter in the brain. While this has allowed applications of MRI technology to expand in the areas of neurology, oncology and cardiology, thus increasing demand for this modality, patient anxiety and motion still remain challenges. An MRI scan takes about 30 minutes, and nearly 35% of patients have claustrophobia or some considerable level of anxiety about the machine itself1, with about 20% requiring repeat scans due to motion during the scan2.

The Philips Ingenia 1.5T in-bore Ambient Experience MRI installation includes innovative elements to improve the patient experience:


  • Positive distraction - Minimal clutter, visual imagery and programmable lighting provide a soothing atmosphere with positive distractions for anxious patients.
  • Personalization - Patients personalize their experience by selecting a video theme and viewable from inside the MRI from an easy-to-position mirror. Combined with sound (through comfortable headphones), the experience becomes truly immersive and soothing.
  • Information - AutoVoice gently guides patients through the procedure, announcing scan times and table movements, providing information that helps put patients at ease.
  • Reduced acoustic noise - Noise is one of the most uncomfortable parts of an MRI exam for many patients. ComforTone automatically provides up to 80% noise reduction3.

In addition to giving the patients the perception of being in a bigger space and putting them at ease, the Philips Ingenia 1.5T offers enhanced workflow, high quality images and a fast, comfortable patient set-up. The Philips Ingenia 1.5T offers the iPatient platform, which is designed for routine and challenging patients, including large patients, elderly and kyphotic. It offers as much as a 30% improvement in throughput, hinged upon the unique FlexCoverage Posterior coil that provides neck-to-toe coverage without the need for any manual removal or repositioning. FlexStream enables imaging with fewer coils and reduces coil positioning and patient setup time. Now clinicians can perform routine exams for brain, spine, knee, ankle and liver within less than eight minutes with excellent image quality. 
In addition, iPatient eliminates up to 50% of repetitive manual tasks4. Moreover, high quality images and remarkable speed are possible with dStream digital broadband MR architecture, offering up to 40% more SNR5 and enhanced throughput with channel-independent RF technology that makes upgrades easy.


“At Philips, we want to build a healthy society and achieve our goal of improving the lives of three billion people by 2025, and in order to do this we need to work with key organizations like the VA on improving the patient experience, giving our veterans the care they deserve and access to key diagnostic technologies like the Philips Ingenia 1.5T MRI,” said Joe Robinson, head of enterprise and government solutions at Philips. “Through our long-standing relationship with the VA we are looking at ways we can help them to address veteran’s health issues, helping to take care of those who have made the ultimate sacrifice for our country.”

Also key for organizations such as the VA is the fact that the Philips Ingenia 1.5T offers upgrades such as ScanWise Implant6, the industry's first MRI guided user interface to simplify the scanning of patients with MR Conditional implants like knee and hip replacements, spine implants and pacemakers. The software helps users streamline exams in this expanding healthcare area and complements Philips' suite of diagnostic imaging solutions, helping to improve hospital workflow and enhance the patient experience.



1 Meléndez, J. Carlos, and Ernest McCrank. "Anxiety-related reactions associated with magnetic resonance imaging examinations." Jama 270.6 (1993): 745-747.

2 Andre, Jalal B., et al. "Towards Quantifying the Prevalence, Severity, and Cost Associated With Patient Motion During Clinical MR Examinations“ JACR (2015).

3 Compared to doing the same scan without ComforTone

4 *Compared to Achieva

5 *Up to 40% more SNR compared to Achieva as non-digital/dStream system

6 Initial availability on 1.5T systems.

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For further information, please contact:

Silvie Casanova

Philips North America

Tel: 1-978-659-7467



Adrienne Smith
Philips Diagnostic Imaging
Tel: 1-781-277-1170

About Royal Philips

Royal Philips (NYSE: PHG, AEX: PHIA) is a leading health technology company focused on improving people’s health and enabling better outcomes across the health continuum from healthy living and prevention, to diagnosis, treatment and home care. Philips leverages advanced technology and deep clinical and consumer insights to deliver integrated solutions. The company, headquartered in the Netherlands, is a leader in diagnostic imaging, image-guided therapy, patient monitoring and health informatics, as well as in consumer health and home care. Philips’ health technology portfolio generated 2015 sales of EUR 16.8 billion and employs approximately 69,000 employees with sales and services in more than 100 countries. News about Philips can be found at

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