Re-Imaging RAO’s History

Imagine if a doctor suspected you or a loved one had cancer. Through uncertainty and a flood of emotions, the most important thing would be to seek the best treatment option available. The first step? Medical imaging. Seeing and responding to an important need in Marion County, Radiology Associates of Ocala, P.A. opened in 1973.

As Marion County’s population grew, the demand for quality health care in the area grew right along with it. At the time, RAO, the area’s first outpatient medical imaging center consisted of Alexander Goulard, M.D. and B. Duke West, M.D.

RAO’s first facility was located in the Ocala Medical Park. That’s also where Mike Jordan, M.D. joined the practice. It wasn’t until 1983 that RAO relocated to their Magnolia Extension office, known today as the Medical Imaging Center. Of course with the bigger building came bigger responsibility. The professionals at RAO responded to the community’s needs once again by adding ultrasound, CT, MRI and mammography to their growing list of offerings. In 1994, RAO recognized that the need for high quality medical imaging had expanded to the western corridor of Marion County and in partnership with Munroe Regional Medical Center, RAO opened TimberRidge Imaging Center, the first full-service imaging center west of I-75.

But they didn’t stop there. Inspired to consolidate breast imaging to one location, RAO and their joint venture partners established the Women’s Imaging Center, RAO’s third outpatient center, in 1996. The appreciation of the community helped ignite enthusiasm to build a beautiful new center in 2000, located off of SE 18th Avenue. With the opening of the Medical Imaging Center at Windsor Oaks, directly adjacent to the Women’s Imaging Center, RAO was also the first provider to offer PET services in Marion County.

Technology has improved greatly since RAO’s inception and they have not been afraid to step up to the plate to do what’s best for the community. Thirty-eight years later, the commitment originally established by two hometown doctors still holds true. Today, RAO is comprised of 17 local board-certified radiologists with training in a variety of subspecialties.

With four outpatient centers, a Center for Vascular Health, privileges at the region’s most respected hospitals and services that now range from a simple x-ray to a digital mammogram or breast MRI, RAO offers the latest in technology and provides the best subspecialized care. TimberRidge Imaging Center allows RAO to serve the State Road 200 population, as well as Dunnellon and other surrounding areas, with full-service breast imaging to include screening and diagnostic mammography, breast ultrasound and ultrasound-guided breast biopsy.

Because of RAO physicians’ hard work and dedication, both the Women’s Imaging Center and TimberRidge Imaging Center have been designated as Breast Imaging Centers of Excellence. This achievement is a direct result of RAO’s physicians and staff’s unsurpassed experience, high practice standards, services and technology.

The professionals at RAO also understand the importance of giving back and supporting organizations, such as the American Cancer Society, the Public Education Foundation of Marion County and the March of Dimes. Their continued dedication, community support and focus on their patients’ quality of care, makes it obvious why they are the most renowned, respected and experienced name in diagnostic imaging services in Marion County. RAO is the picture of quality that will create a lasting image for future decades.

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