LEWISTON, Maine—A new surgical assist system—literally, a robot—is coming to Central Maine Medical Center this fall, and doctors there say the new addition will give them advanced tools for use in a range of areas, including urology, bariatrics, and gynecology.
The purchase of “Da Vinci” (the trademarked name of the device) is just the most recent development in Central Maine Healthcare’s growing surgical service. In the past year, the system has hired new surgeons, re-aligned duties and invested in facilities and technology to provide a broader range of services to all its locations, including Bridgton and Rumford Hospitals and the Topsham Care Center.
“We’re committing to recruiting surgeons, providing some depth on the bench, so to speak, so that we can provide surgical services 24/7, and more services beyond CMMC,” said Chief of Surgery Scott Johnson. “Technology like the robot is not only state of the art, and important to have from a quality standpoint; it allows us to recruit doctors with a more modern skill set.”
New bariatric surgeons, gastroenterological and plastic surgeons are among those recruited in the last year, Johnson said. While much surgery continues to take place at CMMC, schedules and rotations have been updated so that surgeons are available to provide consultation, pre-op visits and follow-ups at more convenient locations. Surgical patients in the Lakes Region, for example, no longer have to drive to Lewiston for every visit.
“We are maturing this organization; in surgery, we’ve moved into a very contemporary position. Not only technology, but we are putting the people into the right places,” Johnson said.
The Da Vinci robotic assist supports minimally invasive (laparoscopic) surgery with an advanced set of instruments and a 3D, high-definition view of the surgical area. It helps surgeons provide a consistent, high level of surgical skill and is typically used in surgeries of the pelvic floor, including bladder, prostate, rectal and gynecological procedures.
The robot will start working at CMMC in October. A robot steering committee at the hospital will set priority guidelines for its use. And patients will be informed, pre-surgery, that their operations will come with a technological assist.
About Central Maine Healthcare
Central Maine Healthcare (CMH) is an integrated healthcare delivery system serving 400,000 people living in central, western, and mid-coast Maine. CMH’s hospital facilities include Central Maine Medical Center in Lewiston, Bridgton Hospital, and Rumford Hospital. CMH also supports Central Maine Medical Group, a primary and specialty care practice organization. Other system services include the Central Maine Heart and Vascular Institute, a regional trauma program, LifeFlight of Maine’s southern Maine base, the Central Maine Comprehensive Cancer Center, and other high quality clinical services.
About Central Maine Medical Center
Central Maine Medical Center located in Lewiston, is a Level II Trauma Center serving Androscoggin County and the surrounding region. CMMC’s “Centers of Excellence” include the Central Maine Heart and Vascular Institute, the Central Maine Comprehensive Cancer Center, the Neonatal Intermediate Care Unit, and a Trauma Services Program. CMMC is also the southern Maine base for LifeFlight of Maine, the state’s only medical helicopter service. Supported by the latest technologies, CMMC’s skilled professionals provide outstanding care delivered with compassion, kindness, and understanding. Learn more at: www.cmmc.org.
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