The mobile rental business can be tricky to navigate at times and, frankly, renting isn't always a good fit for every imaging facility. For others, it can be the perfect logistical and budgetary bridge between limited imaging capabilities and a permanent, dedicated scan room.
In light of this, the following are four key questions you should consider as you determine whether or not a mobile MRI or CT scanner rental is right for you.
What type of system?
Answering this question comes down to your responses to two "sub-questions":
1. Which manufacturer?
GE and Siemens are by far the most frequently “mobilized” units in both MRI and CT. The majority of mobile rental units you'll encounter will be from one of these two companies. Philips units are sometimes also mobilized, but nowhere near as often. At this time, Toshiba MRIs have not been built with mobile applications in mind for many years.
If your team already has familiarity with models from a particular manufacturer, it may be worth asking your prospective rental provider about securing a scanner from that same family of systems.
2. State-of-the-art, or bread-and-butter scanning?
Regardless of rental term length, the total unit cost and the service expenses are critical in breaking down a monthly rental price. If you intend to use your rental for research or specialty applications and will require a more advanced scanner, expect your rental price to be significantly higher. If your plan is to perform typical studies related to more common concerns, you can spend far less to rent a more modestly-appointed model.
Rental duration is a powerful element in determining cost as well. Short stints bring about greater risk and “lock down” the unit from being rented elsewhere. Because of this, these brief terms generally carry a higher monthly cost than longer-term rentals. 6+ month or 12+ month terms are far more economical for a renter, as the provider's travel and set-up expenses are distributed over a longer period.
Transport plays a key part of the dollars and “sense” puzzle. The further the drive, the greater the expense. Location also impacts the wear and tear that a mobile unit will be subject to.
Finally, be aware that the flux of mobile capacity and demand can impact pricing and availability with very little notice. Your planning and timing will count for a lot in finding the right equipment, within the budget allocated.
Regardless of what your answers to the questions above may be, our team is available to discuss your potential rental needs, short term or long, MRI, CT, C-arms and even more imaging modalities.