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Digital Radiography Plate Drop Coverage: What You Need to Know

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You’ve bought an expensive, top of the line wireless DR panel (digital radiography). It’s only been out of the box for two days when your lead tech, who is used to working with inexpensive CR plates, drops it. Do you have DR panel drop coverage?

Okay, so the paragraph above is scary, right? Almost scary enough to second-guess an upgrade or certainly purchase insurance coverage. Costly object X is entered into catastrophic situation Y and a hypothetical lack of coverage leads to budget-crushing dollar amount Z in damages. The story may be hackneyed but, at its core, it relays the reason why any of us buy coverage for anything: in case of XYZ.

If you're on the road to DR panel ownership, drop coverage should at least be part of the conversation with your provider. Keep reading and we'll share more details you can use as you approach the subject of DR panel drop coverage.

Want even more protection for your DR panel? Click here to learn about protective DR panel carrying cases.

What Is Drop Coverage?

If you’re unfamiliar with drop coverage, it’s a relatively self-explanatory concept: a plan purchased from an OEM or third party that provides funding toward replacing your DR plate should it be dropped during the course of regular use. Under most of these plans, a replacement for a dropped panel arrives in 48-72 hours.

Why Do You Want It?

DR panels are far more expensive to replace than traditional CR plates. If you are converting from CR to DR your techs are used to replacing dropped plates inexpensively if needed. Most DR panels are not made to sustain being dropped and, at $25,000-$50,000 each, are very expensive to replace.

What Does a Drop Coverage Plan Cost?

An average coverage plan costs between $2,500 and $5,000 per year, depending on the type of panel you have and the coverage options you choose. Some plans come with flexible deductibles, so be aware that there may be some out-of-pocket cost involved with replacing your dropped panel.

Things to Consider Before You Buy

Read the terms of a drop coverage offer very carefully. Some terms have clauses that exclude "accidental droppage" (i.e. out of someone's hands as opposed to one of the X-ray unit's trays) and many of them only cover a portion of the DR panel’s cost, though deductibles are negotiable. Think about adding your DR panel as a rider to your hospital or imaging center’s insurance policy. This will frequently offer more protection at a lower premium. Whatever you learn as you evaluate coverage options and their reimbursement and replacement details, it's a good idea to have some form of coverage on your DR panel should the "dreaded XYZ" occur.

We would love to hear about your experience with the benefits and potential drawbacks of drop coverage.  And, if you’re considering upgrading your analog X-ray room, we’re here to help. 

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