How to Properly Budget Medical Equipment for Your Facility
Medical facilities are well known for having large budgets to supply their equipment and run their building for the fiscal year. Hospitals, physician’s offices, clinics, and ambulatory surgery centers often follow strict budgets, so any amount saved can provide financial flexibility wherever it’s needed most; whether that be for facility upgrades/renovations, medical equipment, or maintenance. Below are some tips for medical equipment budgeting. Click to read more, and become a savvy saver!
Audit Supply Usage / Standardize Supplies
Over time, the cost of even inexpensive supplies can add up so you want to make certain that these supplies are being utilized efficiently. Performing an audit on your supply usage can help expose which supplies are being used the most and which are not used as frequently. You can make note not to order the supplies that are used the most infrequently. From there, you can adjust your stock levels accordingly to reduce the quantities on hand of lesser utilized products. Once you know which supplies are in highest demand for your center, you may be able to save by buying these in bulk as many suppliers offer quantity-based purchase discounts. You will also save on shipping costs the less times that you place an order. It’s also a wise idea to periodically compare your current supplier’s prices with other similar companies, you may find that their competition is more affordable. Signing onto GPO’s may be very beneficial in that they have arranged relationships with suppliers that they may be able to afford supplies for a lower price than your current independent organization.
Use An Automated Inventory Management System
While you are performing your audit, you may realize that you place last minute orders far too frequently and are spending too much on expedited shipping costs, or just very frequent shipments. Implementing an automated inventory management system can reduce these costs. Once you program a threshold, an item will be automatically ordered whenever its inventory drops below a specified number. You can set this number to be larger for larger inventory items, and smaller for less frequently used items.
Sell Surplus Equipment
Selling your surplus equipment is an easy way to free up space in your facility and have additional funds. When your facility sells equipment, you can use that money wherever it would be most beneficial; for example, to purchase newer equipment with better technology. And newer equipment can help recruit surgeons, increase the efficacy of the procedures they perform, and potentially reduce patient recuperation times.
Thinking About Equipment Rentals
Cost effective practices can even extend into the need for equipment. If you need to upgrade or replace capital equipment, renting is a smart way to do so without committing to purchasing as long as it is on a short term basis. By renting, you can ensure that equipment is immediately available for use without any capital outlay. This efficient management of resources also allows the user to try newer equipment. You can also use this option with a new uncommitted surgeon during their on-boarding process. Renting equipment during patient influx seasons can allow your facility to better serve your patients without using a majority of the capital budget to purchase new equipment.
Purchasing Refurbished Medical Equipment
One of the biggest ways for an ASC to save money is through purchasing refurbished medical equipment. Refurbished capital medical equipment costs up to 50% less than buying new. Soma Technology is a one stop shop for equipment to fulfill your surgery center, clinic, physician office, and hospital needs. Soma is an ISO 13485: 2016 certified facility that technically and cosmetically refurbishes equipment back to OEM standards. Soma’s equipment comes with a one-year warranty and is serviced by our experienced team of biomedical engineers and technicians. Soma Technology also offers rental and rent-to-own options. Soma also buys surplus equipment. You can sell your unused or least frequently used equipment to Soma and receive money for your equipment that you can use toward another capital equipment purchase. Selling unused equipment also frees up more space in your facility for other uses. Contact Soma Technology at [email protected], or visit www.somatechnology.com, and receive a quote today to help your facility save money.
Budgeting For Unexpected Expenses
It is important to remember that all of a facility’s unexpected costs may need to be payed for by other budgets allocated to different departments. There may be unexpected costs in a renovation, a potential weather related emergency, or administration changes.
Preparing For the Budget Meeting
Before any budget expenses are estimated, it could be a good idea to hire an auditing firm to consult on the usage of materials, labor costs, facility and maintenance costs, and other variable costs. An accountant can also use previous financial data to analyze the overall financial health of your medical facility. They may notice on your income statement where you are increasing spending, or find ways of reducing spending in certain departments.
The budget is finalized by a number of department heads. Before your budget is created, you should take inventory of any medical equipment that needs to be replaced, or any large budget projects on the calendar. Each department head should come to the meeting with a rough estimate of what their department uses; generally based on figures from the previous fiscal year. It is a good idea to budget more than you think you are going to need because of any unforeseen future occurrences. The accounting department can usually make reports of the expenses by the departments relatively easily if the department heads do not have access to those figures.
Did you know that there are ways to maximize your medical equipment budget? Were any of the aforementioned tips stuff that you are going to implement into your budgeting? Is there something that we missed in the blog post that your facility does regularly to save money? Have you found that your budget had to be compromised to make room for another company project? Comment below!