Repair programs within the surgical instrument market vary from facility to facility and repair vendor to repair vendor. Each repair vendor has a method that they will use to develop the right program for each facility they service. Regardless of the vendor or program employed, it should not be confusing or overwhelming to the SPD staff and those responsible for managing the program. The program should have enough flexibility to fit your needs.
For this part of the series, I will explore a few different approaches facilities can take when selecting a repair program. As we dive deeper, I will explore the pros and cons of the different approaches. At the end of the day, YOU are ultimately responsible to ensure that your fleet of surgical instruments are ready for surgery each and every day.
Repair ONLY: This type of program may be called different names, depending on the vendor, but simply stated it is the most basic type program. The approach is simple; the repair vendor will only service those instruments that have been identified as not functioning correctly or is in need of sharpening. This type of program could be employed via an on-site mobile van on a scheduled basis or as needed. Typically this type of program is going to be the most cost efficient program for your facility. The repair vendor will charge you on a line-item basis (based upon GPO Tier) or via a negotiated flat daily rate. This type of repair program should be straightforward and most repair vendors can work within your budget when choosing this approach. However, this method can leave your sets with instruments that may have unseen issues like stress fractures or other hard to see issues.