• Practice Equipment

    What equipment does the practice need?

    Prior to acquiring any medical equipment, decide what you need for everyday practice and then consider what procedures you will be performing.

    Purchase the priority items first. You may want to consider purchasing more items later when your business is generating a profit and you are more familiar with what services you will frequently provide.

    Equipment care and management

    Create guidelines on the requirements for the routine care, maintenance and safe use of medical equipment to prevent injury to patients and staff. Your staff should be competent in the care, maintenance and use of relevant medical equipment in the practice and ensure the equipment is in safe working order.

    Improving your practice

    • Ensure you are aware of the warranty requirements. These can be found in the instruction manual. Keep these warranties in a safe and easily accessible place.
    • The necessary equipment should match the range of services you provide, the type of patients you will be consulting and the procedures you intend performing. This includes appropriate emergency and resuscitation equipment.
    • All medical equipment should be used in accordance with the manufacturers' instructions and be clean, in good working order and appropriately stocked prior to use.
    • On purchasing equipment, ensure you are familiar with the maintenance and service program necessary to keep the equipment functioning efficiently. Read the manufacturer's instructions carefully for each piece of equipment and file these instructions as needed for future reference.
    • Regular preventative maintenance should be scheduled and performed on all equipment according to the manufacturers' instructions and any state and national guidelines.
    • Electrical equipment should be tested at least annually, in accordance with current state and national standards.
    • An equipment register should be kept, documenting maintenance and repairs of equipment. Service records should be maintained for the life of the equipment and available to staff as required. Have a procedure in place for this book to be checked on a monthly basis.
    • All relevant staff should receive education in the application and use of existing and new medical equipment in the practice. This education program and training should be initial and ongoing.
    • Equipment training manuals and operating instructions should be accessible at all times. If appropriate, it is helpful to have brief and concise instructions also attached to each piece of equipment.
    • Staff should remove faulty equipment from service immediately and send it to an authorised repairer. Any faulty equipment should be documented in an equipment book, and necessary personnel notified immediately.
    • All equipment required to comply with relevant standards and accreditation should be purchased first. Generally this equipment is most crucial to that type of practice and this is likely to link in with initial equipment requirements anyway.
    • Ensure that all cleaning, maintenance and recording of your equipment is compliant with relevant standards and accreditation guidelines.