Are you responsible for managing a growing medical practice? There are a lot of things that you have to do to ensure things keep running smoothly. Unfortunately, some medical practice managers try cutting too many corners, which haunts them in the long term.
One of the most important things to do when managing a hospital or other medical facility is to make sure that you have the right equipment on hand. Your patients are depending on your staff to provide accurate diagnoses, which is impossible with poorly calibrated or subpar equipment. Imaging equipment is particularly important for any medical facility to have on hand. Over 80 million CT scans are performed in the United States each year.
Therefore, your medical facility has to make sure that the equipment you’re using is up-to-date, properly maintained and offers the features you need. However, you also don’t want to spend a ton of money on new equipment when you could get a better deal on used or refurbished medical equipment of comparable quality.
Keep reading to learn more about purchasing used or refurbished imaging equipment for your medical practice.
Get the Right Imaging Equipment for Your Medical Practice
Medical imaging technology has been pivotal in the health industry by properly diagnosing, treating and monitoring medical conditions by performing an internal imaging of the human body. The need for this technology was necessitated by the medical desire to understand the internal workings of the human body and get a closer and clearer view of it to properly make medical diagnoses and take proper clinical action. Owning this technology is absolutely necessary for all modern medical facilities.
Types of Imaging Equipment
Imaging technology has revolutionized the medical industry, and it is hard to remember its humble beginnings, where medical practitioners never would have thought this technology would be the answer to so many of their most pressing questions. Now, we have more modern sophisticated imaging devices. The first medical imaging representations were X-rays, which were discovered by Wihelm Conrad Roentegen in 1895. Roentegen was a German physicist. His discovery of X-rays was a notable genesis of the journey to developing modern medical imaging technology. We will discuss the different types of imaging equipment and highlight them here:
X-ray Scan: While this imaging device might be the oldest diagnostic tool, it is still in use today. It sends an electromagnetic-like radiation through the body to show the human skeleton and some conditions related to dental, lungs or blood. It also shows if there are foreign object inside the body.
MRI Scan: This is also known as Magnetic Resonance Imaging, which was developed in the 1970’s, although its roots can be traced even further back to Colombia physics professor Isidor Rabi in 1937. The device utilizes radio waves and magnetic field which are sent through the body to have an accurate visual description of the inner body structure, such as organs and tissues.
CT Scan: Also known as Computerized Tomography, this technology was also invented in the 1970’s as the MRI. It makes use of X-ray radiation to create three-dimensional images of the body taken from various angles to have a visual depiction of a human body internal structures like tissues, blood vessels and tissues.
PET Scan: It is also known as Positron Emission Tomography and utilizes radioactive dye to produce detailed images which organs and body system functions can be deduced from.
Ultrasound: This device is also known as sonography and utilizes sound waves by sending it through the body which are in turn converted to accurate images.
Importance of Imaging Equipment
The importance of imaging technology cannot be overemphasized in the modern health sector. This advance in technology has helped to provide medical services which were difficult to do in the past, which include:
- Diagnosis: The ability to have an accurate visual representation of the human internal system and organs have helped in making right diagnosis. Other times, it is used to make early diagnosis.
- Treatment: After coming up with a correct diagnosis, which this technology helps with, the right treatment could then be easily proposed.
- Monitoring or Assessment: Subsequent monitoring of the internal workings of the body can be assessed by using this technology, which helps keep the condition in check.
Cost of New Medical Imaging Equipment
Owning one of these imaging devices, especially new ones, are very expensive, with some costing as much as millions of dollars, besides additional cost of setting up the facilities they will be sited at. We will provide you with the average price of some of these imaging equipment:
- X-ray Scanner: This could cost between $3,000 and $200,000, depending on the purpose or brand.
- MRI Scanner: This costs between $150,000 to millions of US dollars.
- CT Scanner: A new CT scanner could be bought between $300,000 to millions of dollars.
- PET Scanner: The price of a new PET scanner ranges from $1.7 million to $2.5 million.
- Ultrasound: Getting a new ultrasound device ranges from $20,000 to $250,000.
Used and Refurbished Imaging Equipment with Cost Breakdown
The cost of owning this medical equipment new are high, which is why the much cheaper alternative is adopted by lots of health facilities – used and refurbished imaging equipment. However, this approach comes with factors to be considered, which include:
- Condition of the equipment and if it is safe to use.
- Where and best place to purchase.
- Fair price.
As earlier stated, one of the advantages of this approach is how cheap it is compared to the brand-new alternative, which is lesser than a halve of the new equipment. It is also important to note that refurbished imaging equipment might cost more than used ones, as most times customers don’t get to buy directly from the seller. It is worth noting that prices of these imaging devices might include delivery, installation and maintenance or servicing fee to some, while to others, it doesn’t. Hence, it is worth noting that the price quoted might not include some other costs. The cost breakdown might follow this pattern:
- Actual price of equipment
- Delivery fee
- Equipment facility creation fee
- Maintenance fee.
Advantages of Used and Refurbished Imaging Equipment
Besides this approach being more economical than its other, more expensive alternative, we can also identify these other advantages:
- It saves the buyer from bearing the effect of depreciation, which the original owner bears.
- Great value for money, as similar functions are expected with brand news.
- Health facilities on tight budget can remain in operation and provide much needed health care.
The medical needs technological advancements have met in the past decades are unprecedented. This won’t be stopping anytime soon, as ways to improve medical technology are constantly being sought. During the course of this article, we have been able to identify the role medical imaging technology has played in improving human’s health, the types and importance of imaging equipment. In addition to this, we also highlighted how expensive new imaging devices could be, especially on health facilities on tight-knit budgets. The search of how to avoid this cost is what borne the cheaper alternative idea – owning used or refurbished imaging equipment. Hence, to every medical practitioners or facilities on a tight budget, this approach is not only economical, but comes along with a string of other advantages, albeit some factors should be strongly considered when choosing this approach.