A paradigm shift in diagnostic imaging: The PET/MRI scanner improves health outcomes within the framework of universal health provision. The PET/MRI scanner optimises resources in the Catalan public system.

What is PET / MRI?

A PET/MRI scanner is a device that brings together the two most powerful diagnostic imaging tools available today: positron emission tomography and magnetic resonance imaging. It also integrates anatomical, functional and molecular information. It has been installed thanks to the philanthropic collaboration of the Fundació Privada Daniel Bravo Andreu and has been in operation since November 2022.

It is the first PET/MRI scanner in the Catalan public healthcare network, being available for the whole territory and positioning the Catalan health system as a benchmark in precision medicine.

The diagnostic applications of PET/MRI cover a wide range of specialities: the detection of prostate and gynaecological cancers, oncoendocrinology, liver and brain tumour pathologies, breast, head and neck and colorectal cancers, neurodegenerative heart diseases, inflammatory diseases and other rare diseases.


What are the benefits of PET/MRI?

  • It is the best option for early and accurate detection of cancer and other diseases.
  • Improves diagnostic accuracy and allows the best therapeutic option to be selected
  •  It reduces the number of tests needed 
  • It avoids travel for citizens (more comfort).
  • Reduces diagnostic time and, therefore, the distress of users
  • Improves patient safety
  • Reduces radiation by 60% compared to PET/CT
  • Avoids over-treatment

Why will it be installed at Bellvitge University Hospital?

  • We were the first public centre in Spain to have a PET/CT scanner.
  • We have the appropriate space and the necessary technological and scientific environment for this new infrastructure.
  • We are a benchmark in complex innovative procedures at national and international level in robotic surgery; oncological care; diagnostic imaging; heart area; neurology and neurosurgery and transplants, among others.
  • We are the tertiary reference hospital for the entire southern axis of Catalonia and we provide healthcare coverage to more than 2 million people.
  • We perform the highest volume of diagnostic tests with nuclear medicine in Spain.

Holistic and future project

The new High Precision Diagnostic Centre generates is a paradigm shift in diagnostic imaging and nuclear medicine, a new model that takes the patient experience as the backbone, from the preparation of the service to its evaluation, in order to improve the care safety and effectiveness. In this sense, Bellvitge Hospital has worked on the development of the Patient Experience Project (adult and children). It includes the user participation in the designing of the space that will house the High Precision Diagnostic Centre, as well as the deployment of the model for the articulation of monitoring and evaluation systems of the measures implemented throughout the project focused on improving the patient experience.

The Centre features elements that connect it with the Llobregat Delta, the natural and industrial area closest to the hospital. It incorporates them as both the decoration and a game, since in each space it invites us to identify different elements of the very Delta theme (flowers, planes, boats, birds...) and offers us the opportunity to expand the information about the natural diversity of the area by QR codes.

The incorporation of a PET/MRI scanner also facilitates the development of new research and teaching projects, such as a new master's degree in Precision Diagnostic Medicine along with the University of Barcelona (UB).


Reference environment

The Bellvitge Campus institutions already constitute a pole of reference in Spain in precision diagnosis and treatment by imaging, with more than 4,000 m² devoted to: 2 positron emission tomography and computed tomography (PET/CT), 2 single photon emission tomography and computed tomography (SPECT/CT), 1 gamma camera, 1 metabolic therapy room, 3 MRI scanners, 6 computed tomography scanners (CT), 3 angiographs, 7 ultrasound scanners, 2 mammographs, 7 conventional X-ray rooms, and, the positron emission tomography and magnetic resonance imaging scanner (PET/MRI).


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