January 27, 2017

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Sue Schade: Yes We Can, Women in HTM

I recently wrote a post aimed at women working in health IT and presented a HIMSS webinar about attracting the future leaders in STEM. In preparing for the webinar, I tapped the women who have received the CHIME-HIMSS CIO of the Year Award over the years. This includes the most recent recipient, Pam Arora, senior […]

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January 23, 2017

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Matt Baretich: Seize the Day with New TJC Requirements

By now, nearly everyone in the HTM community is aware of the substantial and unexpected changes in Joint Commission requirements for on-schedule completion of scheduled maintenance. I won’t go into the details here because recent webinars from AAMI and ECRI Institute, and one forthcoming from ACCE, are spreading the word. The gist is that we […]

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January 10, 2017

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Donald Armstrong: In 2017, Let’s Blow Our Horns All Year Long

I am not one for New Year’s resolutions, but I have had something on my mind for 2017. As biomeds or healthcare technology management (HTM) professionals, we do not get the credit we deserve. I don’t want that to come across in a sour grapes sort of way. I’m simply pointing out a truth. When […]

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December 20, 2016

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William Hyman: Precision Matters in Medical Device Terminology

I have long been concerned (some might say obsessed) with the distinction between a medical device being “approved” and one being “cleared.” In simple terms, only a Class III device that has successfully traversed the PMA process has been approved. A Class II device that has reached the market via a 510(k) Premarket Notification has […]

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November 16, 2016

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William Hyman: What Do FDA Inspections of Hospitals for MDR Compliance Tell Us?

Medical device reporting (MDR) is mandatory for hospitals and others captured under the definition of “device use facilities,” which does not include physician offices. Also subject to mandatory reporting are manufacturers for which this is a well-entrenched activity. The three categories of device-related events that must be reported are deaths, serious injuries, and, for manufacturers, […]

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November 14, 2016

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James Piepenbrink: I’m Not Just a Clinical Engineer; I’ve Been a Patient, Too

For 36 years, I worked at two major teaching hospitals in Boston. I have been on a cancer ward, in an infusion center, inside an MRI and CT scan, in the OR and PACU, the ER, the cardiac ward, the cath lab, and other diagnostic areas—not only as a clinical engineer, but as a patient. […]

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November 10, 2016

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Donald Armstrong: What Makes a Great Biomed?

During a recent discussion with several respected biomed colleagues, the topic of certification came up. There was mix of certified and noncertified biomedical equipment technicians at the table, some with bachelor’s degrees and others with associate’s degrees. We considered a couple of questions: “Does being certified make you a better biomed?” Would you choose a […]

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November 7, 2016

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Nancy Chobin: Understand the Difference between Certification and Competency

As the former executive director of the Certification Board for Sterile Processing and Distribution, Inc. (1988-2014), I had the opportunity to learn a great deal about certification and its impact on the safety of patients. Few can argue that there is a critical need for competent sterile processing personnel; they perform essential duties that can […]

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November 1, 2016

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Carol Davis-Smith: The Value of Speaking Up

We are all faced with professional situations that sometimes don’t feel “quite right.” There’s an inner voice in all of us that calls us to action when these situations occur. But some people don’t speak up for fear of retaliation or even a fear of inaction (that is, if we do say something, nothing will […]

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October 31, 2016

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Wil Vargas: Tackling the Tower of Babel with Health Software Defects

A security flaw is identified in another medical device, another set of patient data results is mixed up, configuration information is lost after a software update, another device fails to perform as intended. News stories continue to implicate software in medical device failures as the use of software in healthcare continues to grow. We don’t […]

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