At a time when budgets are under pressure, does it make sense to save money by minimising the maintenance of medical equipment, or should care homes and hospitals invest in this provision?
We explore eight reasons why it makes sense to maintain equipment.
- Legal obligations - PUWER applies to equipment used in health and social care settings, as does LOLER - to learn more about this, head over to the HSE website.
- Reduce downtime - timely preventative maintenance and safety checks can help in anticipating or stopping faults from happening and can thereby reduce unexpected downtime and incurring replacement or rental costs.
- Resident / patient safety. Protect your residents and patients by ensuring that equipment used for their care is safe and fit for purpose.
- Staff safety. Nurses, carers and therapists are all at risk of injury if equipment malfunctions. For instance a breakdown mid-transfer could expose them to manual handling risks.
- Reputation. Protect your organisation from reputational risks, e.g. CQC reports, complaints from patients, residents and relatives.
- Longer service life. Proper maintenance will genuinely lengthen the life of equipment; it is always disappointing to see equipment that has been written off because of maintenance applied too late or lack of awareness on parts and their availability.
- Lower costs. An example of how spending money on maintenance can save money; an air mattress inspection which may result in a £75 replacement cover, and a £30 replacement compressor. If ignored, the cost of replacing the mattress could be anything from £300 - £1000.
- Warranty preservation. Warranties offered by manufacturers are almost always conditional upon correct and regular maintenance taking place.
If maintaining equipment is important to your organisation, and you've got any questions, please get in touch on 01926 889677 or email us here. Even if we can't help, we will probably be able to point you to an organisation that can.