by Sean Ruck
, Contributing Editor | August 01, 2014
From the August 2014 issue of HealthCare Business News magazine
“If you have a problem with an asset, the FDA will show up shut down the asset and demand to see all the paperwork — they’ll want to see the paperwork on all the parts etc,” he says.
Still, Spearman sees multiple scenarios coming up. In-house options are becoming more attractive for larger providers and more and more facilities are starting to consider them. “There is a large IDN in the Southwest— they had a two million dollar service contract that went to zero. That customer is completely empowered after a three year service transition,” Spearman says.
Repair versus replace
A lot of components on both CT and MR are completely repairable, says Jeff Fall, president of Oxford Instruments.
That means facilities have a choice to make. By not having to troubleshoot, but instead just replace a whole module may save time in some instances, but it can be costly, especially in the absence of a full-service contract. So time versus cost is an equation the hospital will have to solve.
For hospitals going to part replacement route, that means they’re going the ISO route more likely than not. In that case, Fall says facilities need to be well-aware of the reputation of the company they’re working with. “Not all third-parties are equal,” he says. “I think third-parties all get lumped into one group and a lot of consumers don’t know there’s a difference between them.” One differentiator is the certifications a group holds. If they’ve met certain accreditation standards and ISO requirements that will help to prove the company has the experience and knowledge necessary for the job.
That accreditation will be a key component in the future and consolidation seems to be increasing allowing for more accreditations under one roof. “What I see happening and has been happening is a consolidation of the vendor base,” says Jeremy Probst, COO for Technical Prospects. “Companies that do centralized procurement are requesting and requiring more out of vendors.”
Probst feels that high-quality and technical support will be the future of the industry. And like others, he believes customers will be looking for partners and solutions rather than just transactional business.