How to Establish and Drive Medical Equipment Standards
There’s no arguing the importance of creating and maintaining standards for medical equipment planning. A comprehensive standards list gives your organization many powerful advantages.
- Cost. You may have more negotiating power if you’re driving a standard with a specific brand.
- Continuity. Standardizing equipment to a specific model (or narrow list of models) minimizes the amount of training and maintenance expertise for technicians and medical professionals.
- Clinical care. Healthcare workers can provide the best care when their environment and equipment is predictable. Flexibility amongst staff and equipment is key.
- Controlling costs and budgeting. Understanding the equipment your facility uses and the time and money it takes to procure, learn and maintain that equipment will help facilitate a more accurate capital management plan or routine replacement roadmap.
Standards are important, but if you’re having a hard time leveraging them within your organization, here are four strategies for establishing and driving organizational equipment standards adoption.
- Include all key stakeholders. Assembling a cross-functional team is critical to managing a top-notch equipment standardization initiative. Your team should include everyone who operates, interfaces, and comes into contact with the equipment. This can include clinicians, IT, building management, finance, bio-med engineering, security, infection control, and more. Not every organization will be able to include all of these stakeholders, but the more stakeholders that are consulted, the more opportunity that all aspects of improving patient care can be addressed.
- Make sure standards are highly visible. There are many ways to share standards. You can export and route the full equipment list. You may choose to hold a global meeting. Or, if you are working in the Attainia medical equipment planning platform, you can grant access to the application to each of your stakeholders to review the equipment list. Enabling your stakeholders to easily access and validate the equipment and make recommendations greatly enhances the opportunity for success of an equipment standardization project.
- Establish leadership buy in. Support from key executives and managers ensures that the standards will be followed and there will be fewer off-standard purchases for one-off items or physician preference items.
- Review and update your standards on a regular basis. Select a timeframe that works for your organization – perhaps every 3-5 years – to audit the standards you have put in place. Evaluate your results over time. Is the equipment working well, or should you make a change? Is the pricing competitive? Make sure the standards you created are still serving your organization, or update accordingly.
Attainia Makes It Easy
The most efficient way to leverage your equipment standards is by using Attainia’s medical equipment planning platform, which allows you to:
- Easily create and share standards by using room templates
- Access the Attainia catalog to research options available in the marketplace for each category, including details on price, useful life, specifications, and other important details
- Grant access to the stakeholders in your organization, so they can review and collaborate on standards directly within the software
- Use standards to leverage your GPO to ensure the best pricing and realize the best value
- Call out standards in the catalog through the use of favorites
Creating and maintaining standards is a big task – but also a critical one. The Attainia equipment planning platform not only ensures standards visibility, it also serves as a single point of truth for critical stakeholders and everyone else involved in making equipment selection decisions. Attainia provides the ability to house, maintain, and add organization scope products — as well as identify products under contract — allowing users to address many aspects of standardization within the software.
Attainia has been supporting medical equipment planners for almost 20 years. Let us know if you’d like to assess if Attainia is right for your organization.