A Sutherland hospital now has the latest x-ray equipment after a significant upgrade.
The modernised x-ray department of the Lawson Memorial Hospital in Golspie was officially opened this week.
The state-of-the-art direct digital equipment replaces technology which is more than 25 years old.
The new digital images will support quicker diagnosis and significantly enhance patient care at the Golspie Hospital.
Guest of honour at the re-opening was retired senior radiographer Jackie Knight, who left the department in March this year after more than 28 years of service at the Lawson.
She was charged with turning off the old system on her last day at work.
At the re-opening ceremony, Mrs Knight said: “The new X ray department is bright, airy and modern and is far superior technologically to what I used.
“The resulting images will be made available much quicker and of a much higher quality which should enhance the patient experience.”
Michelle Johnstone, NHS Highland’s north area manager, said: “This is a fantastic, exciting investment for continued development and growth of services on site at the Lawson.
“Not only does it provide state-of-the-art X rays at Lawson, but it also demonstrates the board’s commitment to the smaller remote and rural sites. It’s all part of supporting and keeping services close to people’s homes.”
The upgrade project at the Lawson also drew praise for the way it was conducted, including weekly meetings with stakeholders often held over the board’s video conferencing network.
Andrew Hince, NHS Highland consultant physicist and head of radiation protection, said: “What was exemplary about this project was how everyone worked together along the lines of communication and project structure, which was very well co-ordinated by the local team.”
The Lawson made its way firmly into the history books fifty years ago almost to the day when John Lennon crashed his car attempting to navigate Sutherland’s roads.
While holidaying in the area with Yoko Ono, her daughter Kyoko and his son Julian, Lennon panicked when a foreign car appeared, driving straight towards him.
He lost control of his Austin Maxi, driving it into a ditch.
He, Ono and Kyoko sustained cuts to the face and Ono’s back was injured.
They were taken to the Lawson Memorial Hospital where Lennon was given 17 facial stitches, Ono 14 in her forehead, and Kyoko four. Julian was unhurt.
Lennon remained in hospital for five days and told reporters: “If you’re going to have a car crash, try to arrange for it to happen in the Highlands.
“The hospital there was just great.”