Outsourcing Medical Equipment Maintenance

Medical facilities need to depend on outside medical equipment service providers when in-house service specialists are not on staff.  Regular maintenance, including preventative and corrective measures, needs to be done to keep medical equipment safe and running smoothly.  Updating software and worn parts adds to the longevity of medical equipment thus resulting in savings for your facility.

Many facilities try to cut corners by having personnel perform regular maintenance and minor repairs.  While this may occasionally work it is always better to enter into a service contract with a third party service company or equipment vendor to perform corrective and preventative maintenance.  A service contract will ensure that your equipment is maintained at regular intervals.  This will help to combat against unexpected machine failures.  There are several options when choosing a service contract.  We will look into the options below.

Third Party Equipment Service Contracts Available To Medical Facilities

  • 24/7 Full Coverage: A medical facility can request services anytime, day or night.
  • Business Hour Coverage: With this type of service contract a medical center will receive service during normal business hours, five days a week for eight hours a day.
  • Extended Business Hour Coverage: This service contract offers the same coverage as business hour coverage except that it covers more than eight hours.  If your facility is open from nine in the morning until nine at night this would be one of the contract options to consider.
  • Extended Business Hour and Weekend Coverage: Similar to the above except it adds hours to cover facilities on the weekend.
  • Preventative Maintenance Coverage: This type of service contract only covers planned maintenance and does not cover unplanned corrective services.
  • Time and Material Coverage: A time and material coverage contract is where a service provider is paid based on the actual cost of parts and labor used. This contract is usually based on a specific cost per hour of labor.
  • Loaner Service Contract Coverage: This type of contract allows medical facilities to return the unit to the vendor and the vendor provides a loaner unit until the equipment is returned to its original state. This is a difficult service contract to have in place with large scaled equipment such as linear accelerators and ct scanners.

In our next installment on medical equipment service contracts we will discuss tips on negotiating a contract that best meets your facilities needs while maintaining a reasonable budget.

Medical Equipment Service Contract Negotiating Tips

We talk a lot about cutting costs when it comes to medical equipment service contracts from service contracts to onsite personnel in charge of regular maintenance.   When medical facilities rely on outsourcing medical equipment maintenance and repair it is important that you enter into a contract that makes sense for you.  It is important not to pay for contract features that you will not use.  These features add to an already tight budget that most facilities are already trying to maneuver.  In this installment we will discuss negotiating tips between medical facilities and medical equipment maintenance and repair companies.

  • Take note of the options available in service contracts from the vendor. Consider the details that layout time, materials and labor charges of the different companies you are looking into before making a contract purchase.
  • New medical equipment is less likely to break down than older equipment therefore requiring a less detailed service contract. New equipment does not usually require the twenty four hour, seven day a week contract that older, essential equipment may.  New equipment can most likely exist on a regular maintenance contract for the first three years. Not to mention that most new medical equipment repairs are covered under the manufacturer’s warranty.
  • Certain medical devices, such as slit lamps, don’t require service contracts from out sourced entities. Some equipment can be maintained with regular inspections and maintenance that can easily be provided by in-house equipment specialists and sometimes even the personnel in charge of running it.
  • Some large scaled medical equipment will require only a limited out sourced service contract. Equipment such as ultrasounds, scanners and lasers are all fairly reliable and in house personnel can perform initial inspections and can be the first responders to issues when they arise.  These pieces can often benefit from remote support which can be provided at a lesser cost basis than on service support.
  • Backup equipment is another area where facilities can lessen the service contract associated with each machine. Most back up equipment does not need to be services at all hours of the day and can utilize a less stringent service contract such as a business hours only contract.
  • When entering into a service contract it is crucial that you have everything in writing. Verbal commitments are often hard to uphold.  When you are contracting outside medical equipment service specialist it is crucial to document everything within the contract.  This protects both parties later on from miscommunication.

Radparts is the world’s largest independent distributor of OEM replacement parts for Linear Accelerators and Radiation Oncology equipment.  We provide high quality, user friendly, low cost parts support for linear accelerators and radiation equipment.  For more information on low cost parts for repairing Linac equipment find us at http://www.radparts.com.

Cutting Costs Without A Decrease In Quality

Medical centers are always looking for ways to cut costs when it comes to maintaining, repairing and purchasing new equipment.  This article includes the top ways that hospitals and medical facilities can cut costs while continuing to improve quality care and patient outcomes.

The best way to save money in any industry is to continuing using the equipment that is already owned.  It is common for medical facilities to outsource medical equipment support services.  Using external service providers while having reliable support in house, otherwise known as clinical engineers, keeps equipment running at peak performance.  Simple in house adjustments and simple repairs can save a tremendous amount of money.  Not only are you saving on the cost of outsourced vendor services but also on the costs associated with any downtime experienced with medical equipment failure.

Support can be provided in a number of ways including in person and remote services.  Instead of assuming your issue can only be resolved by having a technician come out to your facility ask about less expensive remote services.  Many repairs can be accomplished through a remote technician.  Through the remote session the technician can diagnosis if the equipment can be resolved with simple tweaks or if service personnel are needed on site.  Most medical equipment vendors can offer support remotely twenty four hours a day, seven days a week.  Many times on staff clinical engineers can even repair equipment with the support of the remote operator.  The nature of remote services allows the vendor to support more than one client at a time thus costing less for remote services.

Instead of working directly with the original equipment manufacturer, OEM, consider getting support from trusted third party medical equipment repair support service specialists.  Working with OEMs tends to be more costly and take significantly more time then services using a third party vendor.  This is a simple way to have necessary services performed on equipment while maintaining patient care.

One of the most effective ways that medical facilities can save money when it comes to large, specialized medical equipment is to make sure that regular maintenance is performed.  Imaging equipment including linear accelerators and ct scanners are known for having particularly long life cycles.  It is in the best interest of facilities to take advantage of this benefit.  Scheduling proper maintenance and timely repairs allows facilities to get the most out of expensive medical equipment.

Radparts is the world’s largest independent distributor of OEM replacement parts for Linear Accelerators and Radiation Oncology equipment.  We provide high quality, user friendly, low cost parts support for linear accelerators and radiation equipment.  For more information on low cost parts for repairing Linac equipment find us at http://www.radparts.com.

Preserving Critical Medical Equipment With Regular Maintenance

There are many critical tools that are needed for doctors, nurses and healthcare professionals in order to make proper diagnosis.  Healthcare professionals are better prepared for medical emergencies when supported by medical devices that are functioning as they should be.  From performing in the operating room to executing properly in the emergency room if medical devices fail patient lives are put at risk.

If medical equipment fails to work correctly the patients quality of care decreases and it affects their safety.  In order for medical equipment to continue to function properly it is crucial that it is accurately maintained.   This is one reason that medical facilities are known to outsource preventative maintenance services for medical equipment.  Below you will find concrete evidence on why regular maintenance and medical equipment repair are imperative to the health of your patients and medical practice.

Accurately Preserved Medical Equipment is Reliable

Truth be told medical equipment that is regularly maintained following manufacturer guidelines is safer and more reliable for patient care. Regular maintenance on medical equipment also helps to ensure machine operators are protected from machine failure.  Potential issues can be acknowledged and resolved before causing malfunction to the equipment and personnel downtime. It is important to remember that depending on the size of your facility maintenance can be performed in house or out sourced.

Work Smarter Not Harder

All businesses are looking to work more efficiently.  Providing regularly scheduled routine maintenance on medical equipment helps to allow your medical facility, no matter how big or small, to run more effectively.  Being proactive in equipment repair and maintenance allows facilities to plan accordingly for equipment to be down.  Unexpected downtime leads to a decrease in patient care, an increase in scheduling in interruptions and loss of productivity. Scheduling time in advance allows patient care to go uninterrupted.

Save Money and Time with Preventative Maintenance

Preventative maintenance saves facilities a lot of money.  Routine maintenance on medical equipment is significantly less than regularly replacing expensive medical equipment and supplies or paying for emergency repair services.  Instead your equipment is kept operating at the top of its game leading to increased longevity and a higher return on your investment.  In the long run by performing regular preventative maintenance and repairs you are helping to decrease the operating costs associated with running your medical facility.

In order to preserve the reliability of your medical equipment, work more efficiently and decrease equipment expenses it is important to perform regular maintenance.  A schedule can be created online to better help your medical facility track, record and analyze data.   This will help your facility increase the reliability of the medical equipment used within your facility.

Radparts is the world’s largest independent distributor of OEM replacement parts for Linear Accelerators and Radiation Oncology equipment.  We provide high quality, user friendly, low cost parts support for linear accelerators and radiation equipment.  For more information on low cost parts for repairing Linac equipment find us at http://www.radparts.com.

Choosing a Company To Service Your Facilities Medical Equipment

There will come a time and day when all medical equipment within your facility will need to be maintained or repaired.  Do you know who you will call?  There are a wide range of companies available to service medical equipment.  It is important to find a reputable company to work with that offers a wide range of service needs on medical equipment of all kinds including linear accelerators, ct scanners and other life saving pieces of equipment.

Look for a company that doesn’t just repair equipment; look to work with a medical equipment repair company that offers a wide range of services.  Look for a company that offers the following services:  installation, set-up, repairs, preventative maintenance, testing, replacement parts and new & refurbished equipment sales.  Below is a detailed description of what each services entails.

Preventative Maintenance

If there is one thing that all medical facilities should do is set up regular maintenance to be performed on medical equipment.  It is imperative that you follow the manufacturer’s requirements for maintaining your medical equipment to increase the longevity of each piece.  It will also help save your facility money with less equipment downtime, downtime that is scheduled without interrupting scheduled patients and decreases liability issues.

Medical Equipment Installation & Set-Up

It is important to work with a company that also specializes in the set-up and installation of medical equipment.  There is a specific way that medical equipment needs to be handled and set up in a medical setting that needs to be done by specialists trained in operating setup.

On Site and Off Site Repair

The company that you choose to work with should provide both on site and off site repair and maintenance services.  The company should be willing to travel to your medical facility to make assessments, test and repair both operating & surgical equipment and tools on demand.  There should also be a facility in which complicated repairs can be sent that offers the same quality repairs with a quick turnaround response.

Supply and Installation of Replacement Parts, Supplies & Accessories

Working with a company that maintains a large inventory of new and refurbished medical parts for replacement is the best option.  You will want to make sure that they also have their own connections to receive parts and supplies that are not in stock on a moment’s notice to avoid downtime.

A company that works to combine all of the functions one may need to retain their medical equipment is preferred over hiring several individual companies to complete the tasks separately.  One company providing refurbished and new equipment, maintenance, installation, set-up, repair and parts is a solid choice as it allows them to also track, analyze and make recommendations.

Radparts is the world’s largest independent distributor of OEM replacement parts for Linear Accelerators and Radiation Oncology equipment.  We provide high quality, user friendly, low cost parts support for linear accelerators and radiation equipment.  For more information on low cost parts for repairing Linac equipment find us at http://www.radparts.com.

Proper Maintenance and Care For Medical Equipment Part Two

In this installment on maintenance and care of medical equipment we will consider aspects in medical equipment care and maintenance including: contracting medical technicians, in house maintenance and basic and extended warranties.  It is crucial that facilities protect their investments especially when it comes to expensive medical equipment that is not easily replaced.  Medical facilities rely on medical equipment to be reliable and in proper working order as needed.  Each piece of medical equipment is responsible for accurate diagnosis.  Each technician is accountable for keeping the equipment software up to date, the equipment running properly and keeping patient care at the highest level possible.

In our last installment we discussed why both proper usage and following manufacturer’s use and maintenance guidelines were crucial in increasing the longevity of medical equipment.  In this installment we will further discuss ways to properly maintain and care for costly new and refurbished medical equipment.

In House Maintenance

It is crucial that the technicians operating medical equipment are not only trained in how to properly use the machine but also on how to perform regular, basic maintenance.  There are certain maintenance tasks that will not be able to be performed by equipment operator however basic upkeep is possible.   This will allow for immediate response if the medical equipment has a failure which reduces downtime and interruptions in patient care.  It is important to be aware of the operator’s capabilities and to know when to bring in professional help.

Comprehending Equipment Warranties

With proper care, maintenance and usage there equipment will be able to run properly for an extended period of time.  Problems can still occur and when that happens it is important to have an understanding of the products warranty.  Failure on the facilities part to follow the recommendations of the manufacturer could void the warranty.  This is why it is so important to thoroughly read and review equipment procedures and keep software regularly updated.

Hiring Professional Medical Equipment Technicians

It is vital for the longevity of the equipment in your medical facility to be regularly services by professional technicians.  As with any large piece of equipment be it in your home or business regular inspections, cleanings and maintenance are required yearly to keep functions running smoothly.  Service is offered in several different manners.  Your medical facility could have a scheduled contract with service specialists, hire third party of vendors on an as needed basis or rely on remote assistance.

The most important element that should be taken from these installments is that with regular care and maintenance provided by in house trained equipment operators and hired professional’s the longevity of  medical equipment will increase.

Radparts is the world’s largest independent distributor of OEM replacement parts for Linear Accelerators and Radiation Oncology equipment.  We provide high quality, user friendly, low cost parts support for linear accelerators and radiation equipment.  For more information on low cost parts for repairing Linac equipment find us at http://www.radparts.com.