My story in healthcare started more than 30 years ago in the Navy, where I was a hospital corpsman. Although I found providing direct patient care satisfying, I was also fascinated by the role of technology in healthcare. Consequently, I branched out and received biomedical equipment technician (BMET) training. Then, after 20 years in the military, I joined Kaiser Permanente to continue my service in healthcare.
As a healthcare provider, I learned the true meaning of “first do no harm.” Healthcare technology management (HTM) professionals play a major role in achieving that goal. We have the enormous responsibility of ensuring the safety and operational readiness of medical equipment so it can provide quality and life-saving care to our patients—those who may even be ourselves or family members. I take pride in knowing that our team contributes to producing positive outcomes for our patients.
With rapid changes in healthcare and technology, HTM professionals are no longer just “wrench turners” or on a “break-fix” vocation. We’re entrusted with every aspect of the equipment life cycle, including development, planning, deployment, support, and disposal. Our craft has evolved and adapted to meet new challenges such as cybersecurity, robotics, interconnectivity, computer-driven devices, and much more.
I’m excited for the future and what we can accomplish. As a leader—and AAMI’s BMET of the Year—I embrace my role to share knowledge and develop future HTM professionals and leaders. “Be the leader you’d want to follow” are the words I live by! I’m proud to lead an all-certified team of BMETs at Kaiser Permanente San Diego Medical Center. Quality work without compromise is what we seek. By our actions, we hope to inspire others to give 100% effort despite challenges and take ownership of their work.
Jovito Gonzales, CBET, CHTM, is lead biomedical equipment technician at Kaiser Permanente San Diego Medical Center and AAMI’s 2019 BMET of the Year.