to provide a high level of ongoing whole life medical device confidence at clinician, middle/senior management and executive director level.

Procurement planning

Caroline Finlay followed and spoke about innovation in procurement. Caroline has a clinical engineering background and has worked on a wide range of equipment projects in the UK producing option appraisals, business cases, procurement strategies, undertaking medical equipping and operational reviews, implementation plans, value testing and working on cost improvement plans. She has also advised Trusts and bidding consortia on major PFI development schemes as well as smaller capital equipping schemes in respect of service planning, design, output specifications, investment planning, service configurations, procurement and operational solutions. Caroline currently oversees a number of major hospital development projects, including the procurement of equipment for the new Royal Papworth Hospital. “The role of procurement is changing,” she

said. “Today, it’s more than just ‘purchasing’, we need to be involved in the beginning of the process to help identify the needs.” Citing the 2015 Lord Carter Review, Caroline said: “The review of efficiency in hospitals shows how large savings can be made by the NHS, and how to improve operational productivity and performance. In particular, the development of the ‘model hospital’ helped to create performance metrics, in order to benchmark yourself against other hospitals. “The impact on the NHS will see a number of trends in technology, such as Artificial Intelligence, digitalisation and genomics. This will also highlight the need for training clinicians in IT systems. “Overall, the impact on our profession from the transformation agenda will affect technology, geography, employment and efficiency. “We need to help understand where value drains away and to help stop this happening. We can do this through data management insight, engagement with clinicians and stakeholders, and to develop a broader expertise in areas such as IT and procurement. This will result in improvements in data, lifestyle and people management, and enable better value,

career, he has served within this department as a biomedical engineering technician, chief technologist and principal physicist leading the clinical engineering group. “In my career,” he began, “as technology evolved, I had to reinvent my role. Currently, we’re doing less in house repair and technical maintenance and more outsourced repair. We’re more involved in proactive asset management, user support and informatics support. We know new technologies are coming, so we need to be prepared.” Addressing the future operating model,

control, compliance and utilisation of resources. “If you’re not in the game, you can’t actually make a difference.” Also addressing procurement, Ted Mullen, head of service, medical equipment management at NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde, began his talk by asking delegates whether they considered themselves to be a) busy; b) very busy; c) too busy to get involved with equipment procurement. With the majority of votes cast for B, he continued: “In the old days, a supplies or purchasing department would get money to buy equipment. It’s not as simple as that now.” Ted has worked in medical equipment management for 36 years working from trainee technician to technical manager. “Today, there are laws and regulation on how you can procure goods in the public sector. Finances have become tighter, and are expected to go further - and expectations are higher. “There is a need to make our opinion count during the procurement process so it’s importantant to have a system to help with the prioritisation of what to purchase. At NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde we use a form which ranks all the categories, their replacement value, the risk score, and then ranks them to give the procurement department a succinct option for the required equipment.

“Lack of funding is critical, so does our opinion count? I believe it does. But we need to make it count.” Asking the question: “What is clinical engineering actually going to be in 10 years’ time?” was Francis Hegarty, a founding member of the Medical Physics and Bioengineering Department in St James’s Hospital, Dublin. Over the course of a 30 year

Today, there are laws and regulation on how you can procure goods in the public sector. Finances have become tighter, and are expected to go further - and

expectations are higher. Ted Mullen, NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde


Francis observed: “We can plan the lifecycle of new equipment and estimate that in 10 years it will be outdated. We planned to not buy equipment, but use a managed equipment service in a bid to provide a better patient experience. Unfortunately, the treasury said ‘no’ but we will try again when the current equipment is outdated. “These types of conversations are changing the narrative. We talked to our CEO and created a dialogue, by showing the NHS Long Term Strategy and he realised the need to drive change by empowering people on the ground. “We are now focusing on support and advancing care via disruptive innovation. We’re doing holistic asset management, but there’s more to be done – such as socio- technical system design and implementation.” Socio-technical refers to the interrelatedness of social and technical aspects of an organisation. It’s founded on two principles: l The interaction of social and technical factors created the conditions for successful (or unsuccessful) organisational performance

l The optimisation of each aspect alone (socio or technical) tends to increase not only the quantity of unpredictable, ‘undesigned’ relationships, but those relationships that are injurious to the system’s performance.

Francis explained: “This can be achieved by taking a systems engineering approach and we can provide a unique skill set with our knowledge. This approach is interdisciplinary and integrates other disciplinary and specialty groups into a team effort, forming a structured development process the proceeds from concept to production, to operation and disposal.

“Systems engineering considers both the business and the technical needs of all customers, with the goal of prociding a quality product that meets the user’s needs.” Concluding the proceedings, EBME chair, John Sandham, thanked the delegates and the speakers, who not only provided insight into the future of healthcare, but explained how connectivity and integration will play a major role in the coming years. John revealed that next year’s event will, once again, take place at the Keynes Stadium MK Arena on 29 and 30 April 2020.

CSJ MAY 2019

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