By K. Richard Douglas
One Florida city, that sits north of Orlando and inland from coastal Daytona Beach, is Orange City. It is considered a part of the Deltona-Daytona Beach-Ormond Beach metropolitan area, which had a total population of 590,289 in 2010. Orange City sits in Volusia County.
Area attractions include Blue Spring State Park and nature cruises on the St. Johns River are popular. Visitors can also observe some of the area’s manatee. Those visiting the area can fly into Daytona Beach Regional Airport, which is 21 miles away.
With such a large population base in the area, diagnostic imaging is a necessary service. One stand-alone service provider that fills that need is Advanced Imaging. The imaging center offers several medical imaging and radiology services to patients. The center also offers an accommodating schedule.
“We are a locally owned outpatient imaging center that opened in 2012. We happily have over 20,000 annual studies with a staff of 21 including two radiologists, five techs covering four modalities,” says Josh Laberee, the imaging center’s owner and administrator.
The center offers several modalities and is a fully digital site incorporating MRI, CT, ultrasound and X-ray.
“We proudly average 90 patients a day; 18 MRI, 18 CT, 20 ultrasound and 35 X-rays. We have five techs on staff daily staggered between 6 a.m. and 7 p.m., Monday to Friday. Saturdays, we run MRI and ultrasound only from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. This is all done at our one location with all new state-of-the-art equipment,” Laberee says.
There are also three board-certified and fellowship-trained radiologists. Advanced Imaging is accredited by the American College of Radiology (ACR).
Staff technologists perform every type of imaging study except for mammography. “We, by choice, do not focus on breast imaging. This is due to us being a smaller, one-location center,” Laberee explains.
It is easy for primary care providers and others to refer patients to the center because of its accommodating hours and payment options.
“We are proud to offer all 93 of Central Florida’s insurances. This allows us to treat everyone like family and rest-assured you are covered for any exam that you or your family may need. We are also proud of the ACR center of excellence accreditation we have received, making us a prepared provider in our community and with our network of insurance carriers and health systems,” Laberee says.
Accessibility is Key
The business has realized much success and growth in its short history. Laberee attributes much of that to the many ways the center accommodates the local community and the sense of family among the staff.
“Growing from five employees, and only doing 3,800 studies in 2012, we closed 2018 with 21 employees and did over 20,000 studies. All of this accomplished while maintaining only one original location. How did we do it? I think one word defines our success: accessibility. We are open 72 hours during the week, but like Chick-fil-A, never on Sunday,” he says.
“During that time, our amazing staff focuses on efficient and compassionate patient care. From assisting referring providers with insurance authorizations to providing transportation for our patients, we are willing to do whatever it takes to make our center unlike any other,” Laberee says.
He says that internally, the success is accomplished by allowing all employees to have access to an abundance of resources and benefits not common at small imaging centers.
“From monthly bonuses, paid benefits, employer-provided lunches; we share everything together like one big family. As a locally owned business, I feel it’s essential to have a blend of staying small but also being able to offer benefits like a Fortune 500 company,” Laberee adds.
Because imaging technologists can never be too well trained, the staff at Advanced Imaging, along with support staff, share knowledge and constantly train.
“We are providing constant contributing education at every level. Utilizing a team-centric approach, we have all members of the staff focused on constantly educating each other on the best in practice standards. From our radiologists being board certified teaching providers, to all front desk being certified trainers with our EMR/PM system, no detail is overlooked,” Laberee says
Laberee says that every department in the office has a constant opportunity for continuing education.
“From our entire staff being CPR certified, to our quarterly staff team-building outings, we are always doing something to continue our education. We are proud members of associations in both the professional and charitable communities ranging from the ACR to the American Cancer Society,” he says.
Keeping things running efficiently and tackling challenges that come up on a day-to-day basis is a hallmark of a successful business. Advanced Imaging has found a way to address these challenges.
“Teamwork here is the key. We have a team in place that is family. The team up front, that answers phones and checks in patients, constantly communicates to the techs of any order changes, a patient has special needs, etcetera. The same approach is taken in the back. If an exam is done without contrast, it’s communicated through email to the whole team so nothing is missed. Working in an environment where your opinion is valued, respected and listened to, allows everyone to be able to give their input. It’s how we make progress every day and sets us apart from our competition,” Laberee says.
Imaging is key to diagnosis, and accommodating the patient, during a stressful time, is key to getting through a necessary procedure. The professional staff at Advanced Imaging offers both and helps promote the imaging profession’s reputation of compassion and care. This imaging business also shows that having an approach that focuses on teamwork and cooperation results in successful growth and positive recognition. In the end, this approach serves the people of this central Florida community.