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The secret to the ultimate biomed cart

by Lisa Chamoff, Contributing Reporter | May 29, 2020
From the May 2020 issue of HealthCare Business News magazine

Mackeil uses carts from an array of brands, including a “crash cart” from Armstrong Medical, with foldout wings on either side, that he repurposed to use as a repair cart.

“It’s small enough for getting into tight places,” Mackeil said. “It has locking drawers, quiet wheels and divided drawers to organize tools. A retired defibrillator cart makes a perfect biomed cart.”

Luxor, which makes AV and projector carts, is one of Mackeil ’s favorite manufacturers for PM carts because the top shelf is at standing desktop height, so he doesn’t have to bend over his laptop for long periods of time.

“For me, the ergonomics is key,” Mackeil said. “I would prefer a height that's similar to a standing desk.”

Rubbermaid’s plastic AV and transport carts are a popular choice for moving items around the OR at Mackeil’s facility. Lakeside, which makes the tiered carts that are ubiquitous in food service, is also heavily utilized for biomedical testing equipment, Mackeil said.

“A multipurpose cart should be a workbench on wheels,” Mackeil said. “Harbor Freight and Home Depot have great selections of rolling workbench carts.”

A Jedi wish list
If Mackeil could create the ultimate biomed cart, he would add RFID chips to prevent loss and more easily locate it, along with a stereo sound bar to provide better sound while he performs his duties.

“I listen to talk radio on my laptop during PM work,” Mackeil said. “I’ve also always wanted to put in a portable power bank so I wouldn’t have to turn my test equipment on and off, and a towel rack to dry my microfiber cleaning cloths on after use.”

Carts made for specialized uses have also come in handy.

“For me, a great cart that I had in the past was customized specifically to do IV maintenance,” Mackeil said. “It had multiple poles on it, along with a place for my laptop and my supplies.”

Mackeil, 2018 AAMI BMET of the Year, has also seen how his fellow biomedical engineers have outfitted their carts creatively.

“There was one where they had some kind of power transporter they’d adapted to their use,” Mackeil said.

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