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Purchasing Medical Devices in Hospitals Safely

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If you have ever wondered how that piece of equipment reached the ward or clinic you visited, here is some insight into the decision-making processes that took place. These decisions involve the engagement of different stakeholders as well as balancing clinical, technical and financial requirements. Failure to consider these requirements can lead to wider consequences in the delivery of care. The presentation is based on a small study which first builds a general knowledge base of current purchasing practice in a sample of NHS Trusts. This then leads to an analysis to identify inefficiencies in the purchasing process, and how such practice can lead to risks in the delivery of care. The existence of these risks themselves are of no surprise, but the insights gathered about the stakeholders and processes involved might be news to some. A framework that highlights these potential risks in the life-cycle of medical devices in hospitals is then presented.

This study was conducted in the Engineering Design Centre at the University of Cambridge, partly in collaboration with the former NHS Purchasing and Supply Agency (PASA) and the National Patient Safety Agency (NPSA), and was conducted as part of a PhD project completed in 2009.

This talk is part of the DIAL seminars series.

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