Integrated Medical Systems International Inc., a Birmingham-based company, has developed the country’s first platform that focuses on instrument readiness, addressing the pains and frustrations expressed by hospital surgical staff and the need for surgical instruments to be ready when they are ready to operate.
Ensuring that all instruments in a set are properly processed at the start of a surgical case continues to be a challenge. “The new instrumentReady platform means IMS works with healthcare facilities to ensure that instruments are ready when the surgical team is ready,” said Gene Robinson, Chief Executive Officer for IMS. “It means that the IMS teams, processes, services, technology and infrastructure create an increase in the state of readiness of the healthcare facility.”
Studies also show that the lack of available and functional instruments could affect patient safety and also increase the stress level of surgical nurses and staff. Not having instruments ready reduces the number of surgeries able to be performed on a daily basis, and therefore decreases revenue and profitability. According to an AORN Journal study (December 2005), an average sized hospital (approximately 250 beds) can increase their bottom line $4MM to $7MM by adding just one operating procedure per day for a year. Having instruments ready saves lives and time, and enhances the bottom line of healthcare facilities across the country.
IMS became aware of this healthcare industry pain and took action to address the problem. “Over the past 18 months, we’ve brought together hundreds of surgeons, nurses, and administrators throughout the United States to ask them how we could serve them better,” said Robinson. “They told us that one of their top challenges had to do with instruments not being ready when the surgical team was ready to operate.”
This lack of instrument readiness inspired a new march and direction for the company. Utilizing 16 years experience of working with healthcare facilities, IMS developed the instrumentReady platform which involves carefully reviewing instrument usage and the number of times instruments are handled within the facility.
The instrumentReady platform offers different levels of readiness tailored to customers’ needs, versus the typical repair and service focus, and features the IMS Milestone process. Milestone is a proactive approach that measures and reviews progress towards a higher state of readiness. The instrumentReady platform allows healthcare facilities to increase the number of surgery cases, maximize instrument performance, and simplify the operating staff’s job by not having to search for and locate the instruments.