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Equipment maintenance: Focus on these key metrics

Equipment maintenance: Focus on these key metrics

Q. What are the key metrics for respiratory equipment management?

A. Most companies serving respiratory patients have hundreds-of-thousands of dollars tied up in their equipment fleet. Proper management of this fleet of ventilators, O2 concentrators, PAP, humidifiers, apnea monitors, etc., can often mean a substantial improvement in operating profits.

Of the many metrics involved in respiratory equipment management, which ones are the most important metrics to meaure? Given limited space, let's begin with the basics:

Fleet utiliztion: Although a basic metric, many companies do not calculate this on a regular basis. For a detailed analysis of your business, approach it from a category perspective, ie: ventilators, concentrators, or PAP. The calculation is, of course: total number of units generating revenue/total number of units available. Althought the ideal % varies by company and takes multiple variables into consideration, knowing and managing this number impacts your ability to take on new clients and impacts your purchasing decisions and spend. Obviously you want this number to be as high as possible without limiting future growth. Monitor this with a graph chart each month.

Total cost of ownership (TCO): Monitoring the combination of: acquisition cost plus preventative maintenance plus corrective maintenance costs plus direct administrative costs yields an acurate understanding of the TCO for each revenue-generating category. Knowing the TCO has two distinct advantages: It helps you make better business decisions when considering the revenue/margin return of new clients, individual and B2B; It helps you carefully manage the corrective maintenance costs, which fall into various categories, most which can be managed by monitoring this metric.

Equipment service management has long been an overlooked area for business improvement. Tracking these metrics will help.

Jim Worrell is chief commercial officer at Quality Biomedical. Reach him at


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