Medical Device Reps Do More Than You Think!
Written by: George Kramb
The medical device industry has experienced a boom in recent years, this has gone hand in hand with the development of state-of-the-art devices that provide greater benefits to patients.
Medical devices are instruments and implements used in the diagnosis or treatment of various pathologies; Medical devices can be simple, such as bandages and crutches, or complex, such as prostheses and pacemakers. The overwhelming diversity of brands and medical devices that currently exist in the market makes it impossible for doctors to know all these devices, how it works, its benefits and how to implant them during surgery. This is where medical devices reps play a crucial role.
Medical Device Reps Keep Your Surgeon Up-to-Date
The main function of the reps is to keep health professionals up to date with regard to the new medical devices available in the market and the benefits they can bring to their patients with respect to the older versions. Reps must have basic knowledge in the area of expertise of each of the doctors they visit so that they can offer the right products for each doctor.
In addition to supplying the medical devices that hospitals request, sales representatives also ensure that surgical teams know how to precisely handle medical devices and their components.
Sales representatives are highly trained in the handling and operation of medical devices, in fact, some companies train them as if they had to perform the surgery themselves. At an educational center in Colorado, future representatives learn how to cut a hip bone and implant an artificial hip.
Medical Device Reps Help Surgeons in the OR
Reps often have more knowledge about medical devices than the surgeons who use it, which is why they have become a great support for the medical team during surgery. Therefore, the presence of reps in the operating room has become increasingly frequent in recent years.
Hospital managers have allowed representatives of medical device companies to actively participate in the logistics, instrumentation, and training of surgical staff in the management of medical devices, as well as collaborate in solving intra-operative problems related to placement or manipulation of the devices to be implanted.
Reps have a unique experience and vision, as they literally observe and participate in procedures dozens of times a week, even some may have witnessed more surgeries with a particular device than many surgeons. This experience is very useful, and they often end up rescuing surgeons from difficult situations during complex surgeries such as vertebral fusions or complete joint replacements.
What Rules do a Medical Device Rep Follow?
While medical devices reps provide great collaboration to surgeons, there are certain rules that they must follow when they are in the operating room. First of all, reps cannot touch the patient or anything that is sterile, and furthermore, the promotion or sale in the operating room is prohibited.
Reps Make Sure Your Surgery Runs Smoothly- From Start to Finish
Logistics is another great part of the reps' work, delivering the instruments in the hours before dawn for the hospital to sterilize them, keeping the tools and components of the device in the right place, etc.
The logistic role has been played essentially by manufacturers instead of hospitals in recent decades. Therefore, surgeons currently rely on reps more than anyone else in the room. Often reps are the first people that surgeons call when they schedule surgery, to make sure everything is in order with respect to the device to be used.
How do Medical Device Reps Help Patients?
Reps also play a leading role in the marketing of medical devices. Therefore, they are in constant contact with patients who may potentially need their devices, answer any questions they may have and keep them informed of any discounts or promotions offered by the manufacturers of the product. In addition, after placing the device, the representatives usually establish a follow-up of the patients to evaluate the performance of the equipment and the satisfaction of the client.
In summary, the representatives help both surgeons and patients by providing useful information and training regarding medical devices. Its presence in the operating room helps to ensure that doctors use the devices correctly and can reduce the amount of time required for surgical procedures, thus improving subsequent results and patient safety.