Medical Equipment in Hospitals
The management of medical equipment in hospitals requires the understanding and assessment of the hospital environment, the maintenance policy, the use and replacement prioritization, in order to function properly, to maintain patient safety and prevent unwanted side effects. It aims at enhancing clinical reliability, patient satisfaction and the satisfaction / safety of medical staff.
In Greece, there is a lack of real, scientific and comprehensive assessment of decisions to purchase or replace medical equipment. This is due to the fact, that decisions to purchase / replace medical equipment are mainly based on insufficient information and inadequate analysis of relative costs, age and status of equipment, usage levels, expected future service provision, and the benefits of new technologies. Purchase / replacement of medical equipment is accidental, arbitrary and is not evidence based purchase.
There are studies that offer many methodologies and analysis techniques, which have been developed to be used to prioritize the purchase / replacement of medical equipment. It is true that the examination of all factors, which have an impact on the purchase/replacement, is difficult and so most of these techniques address some factors only.
The hierarchy is based on the “Analytical Hierarchical Process” or “hierarchical analysis process” (AHP), which is a flexible decision-making tool in multiple criteria. Its creator is Thomas L. Saaty and dates back to the 1970s. The hierarchical analysis process (AHP) makes everything measurable.
In Greek hospitals environment, the implementation of the hierarchy Structure For Prioritization Medical Devices for Replacement or procurement is not based on any methodology and analysis by criteria and subcriteria (function, performance, age, technological age, maintenance cost, clinical acceptability, support, operational impact, performance factor, use, alternative provision of infrastructure etc ) but in random and undefined numerical rankings.
Public hospitals have spent 15.039.367,41 € for the maintenance of 1250 medical devices in Greece (See table below). The maintenance most of the times concerned replacements and was not preventive.
The Institute of Supply Chain and Hospital disposes the analytical tables for services expenses (by hospital) on imaging systems for 2018 and also the number of equipment per modality and provider.