Every day, our team talks with people who are looking to upgrade their analog X-ray equipment to digital, affordably. For smaller hospitals, clinics, urgent care centers, and private practices of all kinds, the conversation almost always turns to pairing flat panel digital radiography detectors with existing analog X-ray systems.
Once DR panels are on the table, one of the next things people ask is, "How many panels do I need to take my entire X-ray setup digital?" There is more than one way to answer that question so- to help those of you who are upgrading consider the process from all angles- we'll break them down below.
Upgrading a Fixed X-Ray Room to Digital
If you are upgrading an analog X-ray room to digital, you only need one flat panel detector. Keep in mind, however, that single panel will need to be moved between your table and your wall stand, depending on the needs of each scan in your schedule. Because of this, many facilities opt to buy two panels to optimize workflow and reduce the risk of dropping or damaging their only panel.
Upgrading a Portable X-Ray System to Digital
A digital upgrade for a portable system only requires one panel. In the case of portable systems, we recommend a wireless panel for ease and safety.
Upgrading a Mixed X-Ray Equipment Suite to Digital
If you are hoping to upgrade an X-ray equipment stable that includes both fixed and portable systems, you can still do it with a single panel. Digital panels can be shared between X-ray systems. If your fixed room is not in use, and a tech needs to get a shot with a portable- they can grab the panel from the fixed room and drive away with it for use on the portable.
Keep in mind, however, that should your patient volume grow, it may become less and less convenient (or possible) to share the panel between units. If this becomes the case, a second panel can be added easily.
Ultimately, just one flat panel detector is all it takes to capture digital images on any and all of your analog X-ray equipment. The choice to purchase additional panels will come down to the workflow needs and patient volume at your individual facility. Take stock of both carefully.
If you're still not sure, you can see a free demonstration of a digital panel shared between systems on site, at your facility. Click the button below to contact our team about scheduling a visit.