Mount Desert Island Hospital President/CEO Chrissi Maguire gives her opening remarks and dedication of the Lani K. Naihe and Luzvie E. Estacio Memorial MRI wing on July 8. ISLANDER PHOTO BY VICTORIA DECOSTER

MDI Hospital dedicates new MRI wing

The new MRI machine at MDI Hospital boasts the latest imaging technologies and uses wall projected video and soothing headphone music to allow users to feel at ease.

BAR HARBOR — After years of planning and anticipation, the Mount Desert Island Hospital finally cut the ribbon of its new MRI wing July 8. 

Part of the ceremony was to dedicate the facility to Lani K. Naihe and Luzvie E. Estacio, two hospital colleagues who passed away last year from glioblastoma, a form of brain cancer. Their names went up on the building two weeks ago. 

“There are so many remarkable things about this new unit and technology now housed here, but nothing has been as remarkable as the sense of community that this has demonstrated for MDI Hospital,” said MDI Hospital President/CEO Chrissi Maguire.  

More than 130 hospital employees contributed $42,596 for the project in honor of their beloved coworkers and inspired the unit’s naming.  

Not only does the installation bring lifesaving technology to the Downeast region, but it is also one of Maine’s most advanced MRI units. The Philips Ingenia Ambition MRI system features near-silent technology, faster scan times and patient-adjustable lighting, image projections and soundscapes. 

According to MDI Hospital Director of Imaging Philip Pizzola, the machine, which has a wider opening, was designed to keep patient comfort in mind and ease claustrophobia and anxiety during what can be a scary experience. 

The unit has what is called “ambient settings” where patients can choose what their visual and auditory experience will be like inside the MRI. Within a typical 20-minute scan, a patient could be transported to see panda bears in Asia, then taken on a balloon ride through the sky, and end up underwater swimming with dolphins. 

Its green footprint is also best in class, since it only uses 7 liters of helium per year, compared to conventional scanners that consume 1,500 liters.  

Pizzola said patients were first seen last fall and already visits are up 30 percent.  

(From left) Mount Desert Island Hospital Board of Trustees Chair Patricia Hand, President/CEO Chrissi Maguire, Leo Estacio and Judy Clendenning cut the ribbon on the new MRI wing at MDI Hospital, named in honor of Estacio’s wife Luzvie and Clendenning’s daughter Lani, July 8.

In a specially designed modular suite connected directly to the hospital’s Medical Imaging Unit, the MRI uses imaging capabilities to detect cancers, including brain cancer.  

“In early 2021, when we were finishing up the final project planning, we lost two amazing colleagues,” Maguire said. 

Naihe and Estacio both joined the hospital in 2007.  

Naihe joined the philanthropy team and quickly moved up to become the first-ever philanthropy officer. In 2012, she became director of advancement. 

According to Maguire, Naihe knew the hospital could not stay independent while delivering on its mission to fully serve the community to the best of its ability without philanthropy. In fact, Naihe initially led the MRI campaign effort. Maguire said that without Naihe’s hard work, leadership and vision, it is hard to imagine the hospital would have had the same trajectory of growth and change. 

“Lani had a vibrant personality and contagious laugh,” Maguire said. “I can still hear her laugh in the hallways… she lives on.” 

Estacio was also a natural leader as a medical technologist. She dedicated her life to the lab, often working overnight shifts four times a week.  

“Luzvie was incredibly talented,” said Maguire. “She believed that every patient deserved to have 100 percent confidence in the results they were receiving. She quickly set a bar of excellence for which all of the medical technologists were to achieve.”  

During her time at MDI Hospital, Estacio took on the role of staff training and did so with grace, caring and compassion, said Maguire.  

“By naming the MRI Wing for Luzvie and Lani, we honor their excellence, their impact, their lasting legacy and the memories shared by their colleagues, family and friends,” Maguire said.  


Victoria DeCoster

Victoria DeCoster

Victoria DeCoster covers the Bar Harbor area including town boards and committees. She recently moved to the island after graduating from Syracuse University last year. Contact Victoria with tips and story ideas at [email protected].
Victoria DeCoster

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