The pressure is high for the leaders of medical facilities to keep up on the changing technology of medical equipment, improve the quality of patient care, and reduce costs of medical equipment maintenance and care. Creating a cost saving strategy in medical equipment maintenance allows facility leaders to stay ahead of their competition without budget concerns. One way many healthcare facilities have chosen to do this is through outsourcing. This allows medical facilities to purchase service and repair contracts from companies that specialize in the service and repair of large scaled medical equipment such as linear accelerators and CT scanners.
Healthcare centers rely on medical equipment to provide the highest quality of care to patients at all times. It is crucial that your facility have a system in place to manage, maintain, and repair high end, technologically advanced medical equipment like LINAC. This can be done simply by contracting services through an OEM or third-party service provider. Facilities must have a strategy in place that fits their exact needs including both maintenance and repair.
Considerations in Medical Equipment Service Contracts
When you are purchasing a contract, it is important to make sure you know exactly what is and what is not covered. Full-service contracts, through an OEM or third-party provider should normally provide parts, labor, and preventative maintenance. Analyze your facility’s medical equipment needs. Ask yourself the following:
- What times of the day is equipment used for patient care?
- Are back-up systems available if the main piece of equipment is down?
- How old is the current equipment? What is the service history of the equipment?
Ways Facilities Can Save When Contracting an OEM or Third-Party Provider
- Choose an 8 am to 5 pm, Monday-Friday option for service and maintenance.
- Combine equipment and facilities into a single contract.
In-House Strategies to Support Contracted Services
Even with contracted services there should be an in-house program to support it. There are quite a few cost saving strategies including the assessment of available staff, the competency of your staff, the history of equipment, and the level of risk the hospital wants to assume.
- Determine your staff’s availability and capability. The staff should attend training and expectations of the level of support to be given for each piece of equipment should be determined.
- Do a complete cost/benefit analysis between a full-service contract vs a combination of contracted services and staff maintenance. Remember to consider the costs associated with training, parts, and additional tools/equipment that would be needed.
- Review the historical data on the expense of labor and parts for each piece of equipment. This will help you determine the cost of parts and labor under contract if you wouldn’t have had a contract in place vs having the contract in place.
As mentioned earlier there are a number of different medical equipment service, maintenance, and repair plans beyond full-service contracts. These include:
- Preventive Maintenance Contract
- Parts Only Contract
- Biomed Support Contract
After doing research and analysis on your existing equipment you should have a good idea on which type of service contract best suits your company. Linear accelerator maintenance, repair, service, and parts will obviously cost more than then the same services on a hospital bed. These are the things that facility leaders need to account for when contracting with an OEM or third-party service company.
As an independent LINAC service company, Acceletronics is dedicated to delivering the best equipment performance and services for linear accelerators and CT scanners across all major brands and models, as well as new and refurbished LINAC systems for sale. More information can be found online at https://www.acceletronics.com/.