Make Sure Your Pre-Owned Medical Equipment is the Right Stuff


Buying pre-owned medical equipment has become an increasingly popular alternative to purchasing new equipment. This makes financial sense not only for the establishment of small clinics and practices, but also for larger hospitals and clinics who are trying to watch their bottom line more closely.

When pre-owned medical equipment has been refurbished properly, it can be almost as good as new, with a similar life expectancy, but selling for half, or less, of the price. However, making a mistake in your choice of vendor and/or equipment purchased can be very costly. And the cost is not just a matter of dollars--poorly functioning pre-owned medical equipment can also adversely affect lives. Here’s how to avoid common pitfalls in buying pre-owned equipment and make sure that you get top value and performance for every dollar you spend on medical equipment:

1. Look for CERTIFIED pre-owned medical equipment

When you are looking for a vendor for purchasing your pre-owned medical equipment, you want to make sure that the equipment is certified. Certified pre-owned equipment has certain qualifications that you will want to confirm. It is generally put through a multi-point functionality inspection to ensure that it complies with the relevant engineering industry performance standards. Repairs or adjustments have done according to original equipment manufacturer specifications and the equipment is certified to perform like new. Often it will include the same one-year warranty that would apply to new equipment.

2) Ask about installation, preventative maintenance, and repair policies.

You don’t just need to be sure what happens to the machinery before you buy it. You also want to be sure of what to expect after the purchase has been made. Ask if the price includes installation and staff training. Inquire how many months of preventative maintenance is offered. The standard should be about six months and should include such routine maintenance as inspection and calibration, free adjustments and minor repairs, as needed. Also, ask if loaner equipment is available in case your equipment must be repaired, and confirm that spare part availability is guaranteed for at least five years.

3) Stick with the name brands.

When you are looking for equipment, educate yourself on the most popular models of the most popular brands. If you stick with what is considered to be the cream of the crop, you are less likely to run into lemons. Purchasing medical machinery is a big investment, even if pre-owned, so don’t take anyone’s word for its reliability. Check backgrounds, maintenance records, if available, and do your research to make sure that you are getting the very best used models and brands available.

4)  Be aware of the different types of equipment refurbishment.

  • “Reprocessed equipment” is checked by expert technicians to verify that it meets manufacturer operational and performance standards. It is thoroughly cleaned, disinfected, and sterilized.
  • “Cosmetically refurbished equipment” is verified to meet manufacturer operational and performance standards. It is fully sanitized and painted, cleaned or otherwise visually and cosmetically restored to look fresh and new and remove all visual imperfections, including evidence of wear and tear. Keep in mind that medical equipment that appears new cosmetically instills confidence in patients, staff, and technicians alike. However, if your equipment is used in areas not accessible to your patients or visitors, appearance isn’t as important. In these cases, the unit’s function and reliability are what count, and you are wise not to devote extra dollars to cosmetic refurbishment.
  • “Parts refurbished equipment” is medical equipment in which parts are replaced to ensure full functionality, along with cosmetic refurbishment.
  • To ensure full and long-lasting medical equipment use, medical equipment can be essentially overhauled. In “fully refurbished equipment” the major functional parts or components that have various propensities for failing over time are replaced with new or upgraded parts. The unit is reassembled, tested for full functionality to OEM standards, and fully cosmetically restored as well.

To get the most out of your medical equipment, seek a superior quality of refurbishing service by technicians with the right experience and knowledge to do the job correctly at a reasonable price. Many types of medical equipment can be successfully refurbished for a lot less than new replacement cost. Quality certified pre-owned medical equipment can function properly and meet your medical needs for years. To learn more about the certified pre-owned equipment at Absolute Medical Equipment, visit the Absolute Medical website.