Reader comments on the 24×7 website over the past 2 weeks have centered on 24×7’s article covering the presentation George Mills of The Joint Commission gave at the annual AAMI convention in Denver. The biomed community clearly remains skeptical that rules privileging manufacturer recommendations for preventive maintenance benefit anyone in the healthcare community.

While acknowledging that he has no professional involvement with preventive maintenance policies now, Rick Schrenker asked, “Exactly what problems do these changes address?” That question, he said, leads to others including, “Where is the data that demonstrates the existence and real consequences of the problems?” and “How has the opportunity cost issue been addressed, ie, what is not being done because resources have been diverted to addressing these changes?”

In reply, William Hyman offered a follow-up question: “What data will be collected to show that the problem has been eliminated or reduced?”

David Marlow directly challenged the “assumption that medical equipment manufacturers know best about what a hospital needs to do to maintain its equipment.” Those “recommendations should be seriously considered in making equipment support and replacement decisions,” he wrote. “But CMS and The Joint Commission should not try to make them edicts.”

Jackson agreed with Marlow, saying that manufacturers “have many regulations to clear and considerations to process when bringing new device or updated device to market. They can’t possibly predict nor simulate the variances in the frequency of use on their devices.”