eNews March 10, 2020

The latest news affecting you and your customers… from the Independent Medical Specialty Dealers Association

When device problems arise

Planning is essential if healthcare providers are to quickly and effectively address device problems, according to Scott Lucase, director, accident and forensic investigation, ECRI. Like having a fire escape plan, “it’s about getting ahead of it. Then when an incident occurs, ‘You just hit ‘go.’” Lucas is quoted in ECRI’s special report, “Top 10 Patient Safety Concerns 2020.”


ECRI offers a poster listing immediate action steps. The healthcare provider should also have protocols for investigating incidents involving specific types of devices, equipment, or disposables, the organization advises. Providers should consider issues such as what data logs are kept, which accessories are included, how the equipment would be sequestered and tagged, additional devices or systems with which it interfaces, and what information must be documented and by whom. Other “Top 10 patient safety concerns” cited by ECRI are missed and delayed diagnoses, failure to standardize safety across the health system, and failure to properly clean, disinfect and sterilize devices.

Financial challenges top list of hospital CEOs’ concerns

Financial challenges again ranked No. 1 on the list of hospital CEOs’ top concerns in 2019, according to the American College of Healthcare Executives’ annual survey of top issues confronting hospitals. Personnel shortages ranked second. Behavioral health and addiction issues ranked third in only its second year on the survey, up from fifth last year. Regarding financial challenges, the “increasing cost for staff, supplies, etc.” was the most-often cited. Other issues of concern to CEOs included governmental mandates, patient safety and quality, access to care, patient satisfaction, physician-hospital relations, technology, population health management and reorganization (e.g., mergers, acquisitions, restructuring, partnerships).

Tariffs lifted to prevent spread of COVID-19

U.S. trade officials recently exempted more than 100 medical items manufactured in China from import tariffs in an effort to fight the coronavirus outbreak, reports Mass Device. Cardinal Health and Medline Industries were among 27 companies with certain products that had their 7.5% tariffs lifted. Exempted products included protective masks, drapes and gowns, hand wipes, medical exam gloves, medicine cups, stethoscopes and shoe covers, according to a list published by the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative (USTR).