Savvy hospitals that use reprocessing strategically as a major savings initiative are seeing the impact of commoditization and the differentiation between single-use device reprocessors: Where the large reprocessors used to produce savings almost equally in soft goods, OR devices, and Electrophysiology, the relative contribution to savings is shifting. An average hospital today can derive 80-90% of their savings from their EP/Cardiology program – because this is where the most premium priced devices can be reprocessed.
Industry maturation and differentiation is now beginning to see the emergence of two different types of single-use device reprocessors: Commodity reprocessors selling discount devices and specialty reprocessors with targeted programs and advanced technological and regulatory competencies.
There are several reasons why savvy hospitals are banking on the EP/Cardiology area to drive reprocessing savings in the future: This is where highly specialized reprocessing takes place and this is where cost savings are likely to grow in the near future. Here are five reasons why savvy hospital executives are looking to utilize reprocessing programs specific to the EP and Cath Labs:
- Demand for EP procedures like AF Ablation is growing faster than any other type of procedure
- Device manufacturers are manipulating device lifecycle to ensure short lifecycles for high-demand devices and long lifecycles for devices that have no competition
- EP/Cardiology devices are FAR more expensive than other reprocessable devices, like devices in the OR, so savings opportunities are highest here
- CRM departments are discovering that although reimbursement has increased, device costs are still far too high for most EP cases to be profitable in the Medicare population
- More FDA clearances for reprocessing are taking place in the EP space than anywhere else
This is making EP and cardiology the focal areas for saving resources through reprocessing. Cost savings opportunities in other service lines is becoming less rewarding for the hospital. A recent surge in FDA clearances of reprocessed EP devices means that hospital leaders should look at reprocessing programs specific to EP and Cath procedures for sustained growth in savings.