OK, so now it appears that we’re going to have to rethink how we schedule preventative maintenance (PM) activities on our critical equipment, particularly if that criticality affects patient health and safety. I believe that we’ve already chatted a bit about the whole clarification of PM frequencies and where CMS stands on the issue (in case you hadn’t noticed, they’re pretty much standing on your head).
In issuing the clarification (and I will freely admit that I missed this at first – check it out at: https://www.cms.gov/Surveycertificationgeninfo/downloads/SCLetter12_07.pdf), the Feds have decided that, in the matter of critical equipment, the frequency will reflect manufacturer recommendations, AND NOTHING ELSE! Let me repeat that: AND NOTHING ELSE!
For example, PM’ing defibrillators on an annual basis (despite what your experience might indicate) is a big freaking no-no! Isn’t that special? Yeah, I thought so, too.
Maybe this isn’t anything to you folks, but I know of at least one hospital that got cited during a recent survey, so when there’s one, there’s usually others (these things almost never happen in isolation). So, if you think you may be taking advantage of logic and common sense approaches to the management of the risks associated with the use of medical equipment, think again (hopefully this won’t shift again, but if history tells us anything.)