Riverbend Imaging finds focus in LaPlace

Published 11:45 pm Friday, February 13, 2015

By Monique Roth

LAPLACE — Lower costs to the patient, convenience and customer service are the three hallmarks Brent Remondet is confident Riverbend Imaging will bring to the River Region.

Remondet, born and raised in St. John the Baptist Parish, opened the doors to LaPlace’s only independent imaging center this week.

“There’s nothing like this here,” he said. “LaPlace was one of the last markets I know of that lacked a facility not attached to a hospital.”

Remondet, who has worked in various medical fields since college, said opening Riverbend Imaging has been three years in the making.

“I looked at this market eight years ago to put something like this here,” he said. “But it wasn’t the right time.”

Three years ago Remondet said work started on securing the right building, right layout, investors and equipment to best serve local customers.

“We took our time,” he said of establishing the independent center, adding “from the diagnostic realm, this is how health care is trending.”

Remondet said growth in the River Region’s population, especially in LaPlace, warrants an independent center, and he estimates approximately 100-120 MRI patients have to leave the parish each month for services.

“Now there’s a local option,” he said, adding customers who traveled in the past now have a place close to home to visit.

Located at 490 Belle Terre Blvd., next to the Shell station, Riverbend Imaging scanned its first patient Tuesday. Remondet said the office is open from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday and has a Spanish-speaking staff member offering translation services.

Currently offering MRI services, Remondet said adding CAT and bone density scans at Riverbend Imaging are in the works, as there are already plans to grow the facility.

“I want to bring things in that make sense,” he said. “But I don’t want to infringe on the independent doctors who offer certain imaging services.”

Working with independent, local doctors is something Remondet feels strongly about, as is the customer experience.

“I want to make sure we help the patient in need, work hard and deliver good customer service,” he said.

Forging strong relationships with local doctors is only one part of being a locally owned and operated facility, Remondet said, adding he has been more than pleased with the working relationships he’s forged with local businesses in opening Riverbend Imaging.

Murray Architects of Destrehan, Jeep Barrios at Reserve Telephone Communications and Bill Robertson at Cool Concepts have all offered exceptional help in opening the center, Remondet said.

“I want to use local people because I’m local,” he added.

Remondet said the MRI machine at Riverbend Imaging is above industry standards, and the center is working on receiving accreditation from the American College of Radiology, which will make insurance coverage of the services received at Riverbend Imaging easier and faster.

“We want to get patients in very quickly, get images to patients that day and then send information straight to the doctors,” Remondet said, adding services at Riverbend Imaging will cost less than in hospital settings because there is no hospital affiliation.

“We can schedule the patients within days,” he said. “This is not a sprint, this is a marathon. We want to deliver the right price for insurance companies and patients.”

The convenience of having an imaging center in LaPlace is that patients won’t have to waste a day of traveling into a larger city, Remondet said, adding the total MRI experience at Riverbend Imaging averages about an hour, with the actual scan lasting 35-45 minutes.

“This is a team effort,” Remondet, the principal owner and one of several managing partners, said of the LaPlace center. “It will take the support of the community, doctors and investors.”

With an office staffed with three local people, Remondet said Riverbend Imaging has a focus on customer service.

“You want the patient to feel comfortable,” he said, “and our staff is on full alert to give good customer service.”