by Lauren Dubinsky
, Senior Reporter | January 31, 2018
GE Healthcare unveiled its Versana Essential ultrasound system on Monday for obstetricians, gynecologists, general practitioners and primary care physicians.
Even though it's being offered at an “affordable" price, the company is still marketing it as a high-quality ultrasound system.
"We have spent extensive time working with physicians in primary care and other general care settings around the world, and have built Versana Essential to meet the key needs of a broad range of different health care professionals," Rob Walton, general manager of GE's primary and affordable care business, told HCB News.
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Ultrasound was traditionally only used by imaging specialists such as radiologists and cardiologists, but now it’s utilized by health care professionals from almost every specialty, according to Mayo Clinic. There is even talk that handheld ultrasound will one day replace the stethoscope.
"While we did not necessarily develop Versana Essential as a direct replacement for the stethoscope, it is clear that ultrasound use is becoming more prevalent in primary care and general medicine settings as well many other areas outside of the traditional ultrasound," said Walton.
In the primary care setting, ultrasound can provide quicker and more definitive diagnoses, which could result in fewer referrals to more expensive facilities. Its Whizz one-touch dynamic image optimization and Auto IMT measurement tools automatically adjust parameters.
The Versana Essential has CE mark, but has not yet received FDA clearance.