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AAMI Update with Mary Logan and Ray Laxton

by Diana Bradley, Staff Writer | June 01, 2012
From the June 2012 issue of HealthCare Business News magazine

AAMI has a core curriculum committee that is now in phase two. We will be surveying all health care technology management professionals to identify job tasks so we can categorize them and look for trends and themes to help with the curriculum development process.

We have also hosted six free CE (clinical engineering)/ IT virtual town halls. We host them once a month on issues like safety and security of medical devices, wireless issues, and connectivity with physiological monitors. More than 600 facilities have participated.

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Further to this, AAMI will be hosting a big summit with the FDA October 2-3 on interoperability in and around medical devices. The emphasis will be on patient safety. October 4-5 we are holding a workshop on wireless issues, as these are a major challenge.

DMBN: In addition to wireless issues, have any challenges popped up in the past 12 months with regards to medical instrumentation?

ML: A big problem we hear about deals with the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services possibly changing the requirement for preventive maintenance related to high-risk devices. The Joint Commission’s engineering department director, George Mills, has been trying to convince CMS they are ill-advised in considering such a change. We have been doing a lot of behind-the-scenes work with George. We are also intending to do a survey of the profession to help bolster his arguments.

The three biggest changes health care technology management professionals need to come to grips with now is the integration of medical devices into EHR, interoperability of medical devices, and the development of mobile devices coming into hospitals and the special challenges those bring, along with the move of health care out of the hospital and into the home environment.

RL: Looking forward, the other thing that is going to impact health care in general is the Affordable Care Act. This could potentially have a big impact on medical instrumentation.

DMBN: Has AAMI formed any new or noteworthy partnerships since our conversation last year?

ML: We have partnered with the FDA for our summits, and particularly for the alarm summit we also co-convened with ECRI Institute, the American College of Clinical Engineering and the Joint Commission. AAMI has done a lot of collaborative work with IAHCSMM (International Association of Healthcare Central Service Materiel Management) and we are working a lot more closely with the American College of Clinical Engineering than we have in the past.

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