GBGH partners with RVH to offer echocardiography services to the community

A patient in a hospital bed with tubes strapped to him. An attendant is looking at a screen while performing an echocardiography.

Photo: Through a partnership between Georgian Bay General Hospital (GBGH) and Royal Victoria Regional Health Centre (RVH), patients can now receive echocardiogram services at GBGH, improving their access to care close to home. Patient Ewan Campbell, 73, of Midland received an echocardiogram from RVH cardiac sonographer Tena O’Rourke in preparation for the program’s official launch on October 5.


Local patients are now able to have important cardiac diagnostic procedures completed at their community hospital.

Thanks to a new partnership between Georgian Bay General Hospital (GBGH) and Royal Victoria Regional Health Centre (RVH) echocardiography services are now available at GBGH. Prior to this partnership, patients from Midland, Penetanguishene, Township of Tiny, Township of Tay and Christian Island were travelling to Barrie or Orillia to receive this service.

An echocardiogram is an ultrasound of the heart which produces two and three-dimensional images of heart structure and function. This important low-risk imaging procedure can assist in the diagnosis of heart murmurs, valve function, cardiac masses, hypertension and heart disease.

Once the echocardiogram is completed at GBGH, the images will be sent electronically to RVH where a cardiologist will interpret the images to assist in diagnosis.

“In the first year of this partnership, we anticipate nearly 1,100 patients will be able to receive echocardiograms at GBGH, reducing their need to travel out of our area for this service,” says Gail Hunt, president and CEO, GBGH. “We are very pleased to partner with RVH on this initiative based on their depth of experience in cardiac care and for the benefit of providing this important service to our community. Offering echocardiograms at GBGH directly aligns with our strategic priority to grow our programming to align with community needs.”

Starting October 5, the service is provided in GBGH’s Diagnostic Imaging department by an RVH cardiac sonographer. It is available to GBGH inpatients and patients from the community referred by a physician. The service is available Monday, Wednesday and Thursday each week with the potential to increase to five days per week in the future.

“As the regional health centre, RVH is committed to providing exceptional care closer to home through important partnerships like this one with GBGH,” says Janice Skot, president and CEO, RVH. “By leveraging the expertise of RVH’s regional heart program, patients can have great confidence in the skill and accuracy of the diagnostic study, without having to travel for care.”

GBGH and RVH have shared in many successful partnerships over the past three years to improve quality, as well as increase the variety of services GBGH can offer to patients.



Jennifer Moore

Communications Officer, GBGH

705-526-1300 ext 5177