IV Pump Q&A with Ryan Tomlinson

Originally published as part of a roundtable on IV Pumps in the July 2020 edition of TechNation.

It is time once again for TechNation’s monthly roundtable feature article, this one focusing on IV pumps. Experts share their thoughts regarding the knowledge HTM professionals need, share cost-savings tips and more in this look at IV pumps.

Q: What is the one thing every HTM professional should know about IV pumps?
Tomlinson: A well-designed IV pump is one of the most undervalued types of units in the medical equipment industry and, as all medical professionals know, they are one of the most important machines available in a compromised situation. A well-maintained IV pump delivers and maintains the flow of life-saving medications. An IV pump that has not been correctly serviced can be inaccurate. An inaccuracy could potentially be life threatening depending on the medication being delivered. IV pump veracity is one of the most important specifications to look at when deciding to purchase a new model.

Q: What are some cost-saving tips you can share regarding IV pumps?
Tomlinson: One of the most cost-effective strategies that can be utilized for larger institutions is to invest in your HTMs IV pump training. Professionals rely on these units 24/7 and due to their usage hours, they need to have maintenance often for calibration accuracy. Uniformity is also a key strategy with IV management. Also, using OEM-suggested accessories will minimize valuable technician time and eliminate incompatibility errors. It also streamlines workflow and training.

Q: What are the latest advances in IV pumps that HTM professionals should be aware of in 2020?
Tomlinson: One of the more recent changes in IV pump preventive maintenance is the gradual shift to software-driven PMs. The benefit of eliminating human error when testing the accuracy of these devices cannot be understated. A tech savvy biomed is sure to reduce repair time, increase accuracy and accommodate intended drug delivery specifications which in return will improve patient’s health. Also, smart pumps can forewarn of a risk of adverse drug interactions, or potential dosage errors.

Q: How important are PMs and why?
Tomlinson: With IV pumps, PMs are critical and need to be conducted in a routine manner. We cannot underestimate the accuracy of these units because it can result in the life or death of a patient. Routine maintenance will ensure these units can be trusted to perform in their expected manner and with so many ways to make a mistake, this is one simple remedy that can be quickly enforced and trusted.

Q: What else do you think TechNation readers need to know about purchasing and servicing IV pumps?
Tomlinson: Selecting and servicing the correct infusion pump for your clinical needs is an important task. The cost and availability of sets and intervals of PMs should be factored into your decision, and you need a reliable tech to keep you up and running.

Ryan Tomlinson
Product Manager, Master Medical Equipment
Originally published in 
July 2020 edition of TechNation.