Stockpiling an excessive amount of equipment is unnecessary and costly. Traditionally, hospitals and facilities took a reactive approach in handling the disposition, storage, and redeployment of their used medical equipment. Post-pandemic, they’ve started to see the advantages of using more proactive techniques to manage their excess or unneeded medical devices.
One of the most significant changes arising from the COVID-19 pandemic was the increased investment by hospitals in medical equipment. Hospitals saw a 15% to 20% increase in equipment inventory, including blood purification devices, in vitro diagnostics, infusion pumps, decontamination systems for PPE, monitoring devices, ventilators, and other medical devices. The enormous amount of funds spent on the additional equipment has put tremendous financial and practical pressures on hospitals and health systems alike.
Medical Device Storage – a Post-COVID Dilemma
While it’s still uncertain when the pandemic will be “over,” as of the end of April 2021, 17% of U.S. hospitals reported being under high or extreme stress. COVID-19 related hospitalizations have been steadily declining since January of this year. With the decline in cases, equipment is not being utilized fully. Most hospitals now have a surplus of equipment they need to either sell or seek offsite asset management solutions for.
Hospitals and other health care facilities are asking themselves:
- Do we have sufficient on-site medical storage?
- Can we properly manage the surplus inventory?
- Do we have the capabilities in place to sell the equipment?
- Should we simply move the equipment aside and wait for a solution to present itself?
A “yes” to question #4 seems to be the common path.
It is estimated two-thirds of hospitals and other health facilities have on-site warehouses or storage areas filled with surplus equipment and other supplies that aren’t essential. How to store medical equipment and medical device storage costs have become questions that are forefront in the mind of clinical engineers, directors of supply chain and facilities management. For some, removing non-essential equipment, furniture, and unused stock can make way for the storage of surplus equipment purchased to meet the facility’s needs during the height of the pandemic. Storage of medical equipment on-site not only saves money, but also makes it easier to maintain and quickly redeploy it back into service as needed.
For others who want to keep surplus medical equipment but don’t have the space to store it, off-site storage can be the next best option. reLink Medical’s Off-Site Asset Management solutions allow you to clear out excess inventory and free up space for patient care while keeping your medical devices ready for any sudden surges.
Selling Surplus Medical Equipment
Transparency into equipment location and revenue are all critical to a hospital when managing out-of-service devices. Accountants and CFOs tend to prefer that hospitals generate revenue from selling their excess equipment instead of storing it indefinitely. Repurposing surplus medical equipment is viewed as beneficial for several reasons:
- Management of excess medical equipment and supplies has associated costs in storage and labor, decreased efficiency, and reduced time for patient care.
- Selling used medical equipment equipment sooner rather than later comes with a higher recovery of value.
- Passing on under or non-utilized equipment allows another facility that needs the equipment to benefit from it.
When it comes to the management of surplus medical equipment you have many options, some better than others. Since hospitals are in the patient care business, it’s helpful and cost-effective to leave equipment disposition to a professional organization like reLink Medical. Our medical equipment management and disposition services use innovative technologies and advanced logistics to ensure your surplus medical equipment is handled safely, securely, and in compliance with all DOD, HIPAA, and other regulatory guidelines and regulations.
Contact us today to learn how reLink Medical can make your post-pandemic surplus equipment disposition a seamless and financially worthwhile experience.