The COVID-19 pandemic still rages, but U.S. PIRG wants to bring attention to the fact that issues facing medical device repair are still unresolved, according to findings from the organization’s new survey as part of its Right to Repair campaign. 

Read Right to Repair: The Fight Heats Up

While fatigued Americans are naturally shifting their attention to vaccines, more than 80,000 Americans remain hospitalized with COVID-19, some of them in makeshift rooms because ICU beds are full. As we trudge through this dark winter of spiking cases and deaths, U.S. PIRG’s new survey of 129 biomeds shows why we must renew our focus on our equipment, particularly how we fix it.

Biomeds are the frontline workers charged with maintaining medical equipment to keep it running. And yet, device manufacturers restrict their access to necessary repair materials. These groups need to work together, but our survey shows that biomeds get too little help from manufacturers.

More than three out of four of biomeds who responded to our survey have been denied access to parts or service manuals for critical medical equipment over the past three months. A striking eight in 10 report having equipment on-site that they cannot service because of restricted access to service keys, parts or other materials. And 97 percent of biomeds agree that removing barriers to manufacturer parts and service manuals is important to their repair work right now.

Read more from U.S. PIRG