David Eck, Director of Health Technology Management at Boston Children’s Hospital gave insight on best practice for Evaluating Alternative Equipment Maintenance Models at PartsSource’s 2016 Leadership Summit.
In 2012, the HTM community shifted its focus from evidence-based PM verses a manufacturer’s recommended maintenance schedule. The shift took place when CMS declared a manufacturer’s schedule had to be followed in late 2011. This threw many for a loop who had already implemented well-developed and successful alternative methodologies.
The CMS mandate caused confusion within the community, resulting in a two-year period of evaluation and clarification. With the clarification came the separation of equipment classification into those eligible for alternative PM schedules and those that must adhere to its manufacturer’s recommendation. It also required alternate methods be constantly monitored to evaluate their reliability, their methodologies and a process for discarding non-functional equipment. The guidelines further require an alternate equipment maintenance (AEM) program, and its processes, must be in writing and qualified personnel must administer the program.
Mr. Eck highlighted best practices Boston Children’s Hospital implemented to create a workable AEM program. These practices resulted in strict requirements that include procedures to regularly evaluate the approach and a determination about how malfunctioning equipment is identified. Also, the importance of keeping an updated inventory of all medical equipment, and creating metrics by which devices can be rated for reliability and developing concise maintenance reports.