The demand for imaging in the veterinary field has increased over the years, causing many practices to stop referring and begin scanning in house. However, because vets can't count on reimbursements the way doctors serving human patients can, being cost effective is a MUST.
While the bulk of our business as a CT equipment provider is in equipment used on humans, we have had an increasing number of opportunities to work with vets. In helping them arrive at equipment selections that compliment both their needs and their budgets, we've found some key areas that vets have more flexibility in and, thereby, more opportunities to reduce costs. Keep reading to find out four ways a vet can save when they purchase a CT scanner.
Consider Skipping Refurbishment
You heard it, straight from the mouth of a refurbishment company. Full refurbishment isn't always necessary. A refurbishment team like ours expends considerable time and effort to restore the appearance of a used system to a like-new state. Unlike human patients, however, dogs and cats don’t judge the diagnostic quality of a scanner based on the way it looks. If you’re tight on budget this is one area where you could save some money. Your provider should still stage and test the system, and we do still recommend purchasing a warranty, but you may be able to forego the cost of repairing and repainting covers.
Skip Expensive Software Options
We love our pets, but iterative reconstruction and metal artifact reduction are "overkill" on a typical veterinary system. You can skip cardiac and fluoroscopy features as well. Leaving these features alone can save a little, or a LOT of money, depending on what capabilities are already enabled on the system you're considering.
Consider Going "Light" on Service
Although we recommend a replacement parts contract and/or a preventive maintenance contract, a comprehensive service agreement may not be required. Yes, you’ll be likely to have longer downtime if a problem should arise, but the frequency of life-and-death procedures at a veterinary practice is typically lower than at a full-service human hospital.
Choose the Right Scanner
Don't be tempted by the speed and features of more advanced CT technology: stick with a system that has a slice count of 16 or below. Equipment at this level is completely sufficient for day-to-day animal imaging. Systems beyond this will have you paying for features you won't use and speed your patient volume probably doesn't demand.
No two veterinary practices are exactly alike, and your facility's unique circumstances may lead you to take none, some, or all of the suggestions above. Whatever you decide in the end, careful consideration of each of these elements will not only help you refine your budget, but also find the best equipment fit for your needs.
If you're looking for your next veterinary CT scanner, our team is ready to help. Use the button below to tell us more about your needs.