Purchasing ConsiderationsThe decision to lend or purchase a new device for the laboratory depends on two main factors: the available household dollars and the technological relevance of the equipment. Purchasing a leasing system is usually the best financial decision because it provides hospitals with more bargaining leverage and can result in cost reductions for the duration of the agreement. But there are exceptions to this rule, especially for some technologies, where progress is so rapid that newer systems will be available in a few years. This is often the case for basic laboratory objects, such as. B of an immunochemical analyzer, which are usually replaced every three to five years. In these situations, hospitals should decide which option is more advantageous and financially more viable to implement them. Technologies in other areas of the laboratory, which remain largely unchanged, such as tissue transformers, can be used for 20 years before being replaced. Purchasing OptionsIn most clinical laboratory environments, vendors offer three options for purchasing laboratory equipment: one direct purchase and two leasing scenarios, reagent rental and a cost-per-report agreement. All three options include the requirement to purchase reagents and consumables necessary for the operation of the devices. Kane proposes to include the language in the agreement, to renegotiate the costs per test as soon as the volume commitment is reached, so that equipment and service costs (which have already been realized) can be eliminated and that only reagents and consumables can be increased from that date. In leasing, Kane says, the lab should know the cost of leasing equipment and whether they want to own the equipment by the end of the leasing period.
The financial department should work all purchasing options regardless of lease or purchase, he adds, because they best understand how to organize the equipment and its cost of money. “You don`t want to be in a position where you have to negotiate a device and find out that the organization still has half the cost of capital on the books, which requires amortization.” The rental of reagents can have a simple to complex price structure. It is important to ask the right questions to dissect all the costs included in this number and excluded. The advantages of a reagent rental are that a monthly payment can be easier to budget, there are no significant capital investments in advance, which means you don`t have to go through the capital committee, the lab quickly gets what you need, and it`s easy to upgrade the newer model of the equipment and return the old one as soon as the reagent lease expires. The disadvantages relate more to the hidden costs or costs of this price structure. It is generally not clear what is included in the pricing. There are penalties for reducing the use of reagents. A facility would require accurate estimates of quantities, or else the costs would continue to add up. The price paid per test covers the costs of the instrument, service, reagents and consumables for the duration of the agreement, but there is no ownership at the end of the agreement. This option offers, like leasing, the use of investment vehicles, reagents and consumables without capital charges. It also eliminates the need to close an annual service after the warranty expires, as the service is covered in the RPC. In a reagent rental contract, the instrument is “free” with the purchase of reagents.
The “free” instrument is an illusion, as this scenario usually has a load attached to each reactive product to offset the price of equipment and service. Reagent rentals can be calculated based on cost per test, monthly payment, fair market value leasing, $1 buyback lease or single rent.