With ultrasound procedures more popular than ever, it is important that you have the right machine to treat your patients. If you are looking to acquire the latest and greatest or are in need of a value system for routine imaging procedures, this ultrasound buyers guide will help prepare you for a smart purchase that will save you time and money.
What finance options are available?
If you are looking to acquire the latest ultrasound machine for your facility while saving on cost, leasing new may be your best bet. The most significant advantage of leasing new medical equipment is the access to advanced technology with lower monthly payments. Newer machines can provide greater efficiency, which may lead to more effective patient diagnosis, access to the latest transducer technology, and improved throughput. By choosing to lease your ultrasound machine, you benefit from the lowest monthly payments, reduced or no upfront costs, and flexible end-of-term options. The 4-year lease is the most popular option for ultrasounds with many clients choosing the shorter 36-month option. Leasing new medical equipment allows you to stay current with the latest technology without tying up a significant amount of capital.
Leasing new and purchasing new share some of the same benefits, which include acquiring a current system with OEM warranty. When financed, the leasing company has ownership of the unit and takes on the residual risk of the equipment’s future value. Whereas with a purchase, you hold the residual position which may be a benefit if you expect to keep the equipment for a longer period of time.
By leasing refurbished ultrasound machines, you are able to upgrade your diagnostic imaging capability at a fraction of the cost of a new system. As hospital, health systems, and patients continue to experience constrained budgets, refurbished ultrasound machines are an effective way to stay current and access high quality equipment.
The fast pace of change in ultrasound equipment is good for hospitals and imaging centers looking to purchase or lease refurbished machines. This means machines as new as the current generation are available as a refurbished option at a significant cost savings with discounts up to 60% when compared with new. It is important to note that not all refurbished ultrasound machines are treated equally. Always ask your equipment supplier about the level of refurbishment as there are differences between cosmetic and functional reconditioning. At a minimum, equipment from Meridian goes through a rigorous functional refurbishment by trained professionals who adhere to OEM specifications.
If you are looking to lower your ultrasound machine costs, but want the benefit of owning the equipment, purchasing a refurbished machine may be the best choice. Refurbished equipment that Meridian Leasing offers goes through the same rigorous process to ensure the equipment operates like new. You can expect to save 40-60% by selecting refurbished ultrasound machines over new.
The price varies largely by ultrasound machine. The different price points are classified as entry-level ($), mid-range ($$), high-end ($$$), and premium ($$$$). Ranges below are for a standard configuration. Specialty ultrasound machines, such as cardiac, may cost more.
Commonly referred to as "Shared Service” systems, these are well rounded units that have a wide range of applications. General imaging ultrasound machines are capable of the most general diagnostic exams and can provide good imaging for abdominal, musculoskeletal, small parts, vascular, and urology applications.
For obstetricians and gynecologists, an ultrasound machine has become a primary tool for diagnosis. The best women’s health ultrasound machines will provide excellent 2D image quality and women’s health specific reports. There is no single brand that dominates the women’s health ultrasound market so below are recommendations for each price point.
Cardiovascular ultrasound machines have the ability to image blood flow, flow blockages, and vascular structure. No one brand has a clear advantage in the vascular ultrasound machine market. The manufacturer will depend upon the interface and workflow that your clinicians find most comfortable.
Portable ultrasounds are laptop style systems that can be transported from room to room and shared between departments. If you work at a multi-specialty clinic, in a hospital, or an imaging center, there is a high chance that multiple departments will need ultrasound scans. It is cost-effective to purchase a portable ultrasound that can do it all.
Ease of use and fast operation makes these ultrasound machines ideal for quick diagnostic scans or to assist with needle puncture and injections. Newer manufacturers coming into the market such as Sonosite, Konica Minolta, and Sonoscape are defining new price points for the "Point of Care” style systems.
There are other costs associated with acquiring an ultrasound machine that should be considered. Extended service agreements, application training, and delivery of the equipment are often an extra cost. Service contracts can come in a variety of different options: 1. Time & material 2. Parts only or 3. Full-service agreements. The cost of maintenance is determined by the service level and type of ultrasound machine. A good estimate is that maintenance will run 10-15% of the original purchase price. You can also consider a separate service agreement for repair and replacement of the ultrasound probes. This will protect your investment from damage or normal wear and tear on the probe cables. Applications training is one of the best investments you can make with the purchase of a new or refurbished system. Applications training can be completed in person or remotely with a skilled instructor. These instructors educate your employees on the features, functions, and operation of the ultrasound. Delivery is the shipment of the equipment from our facility to yours. Often times, an ultrasound machine can be pre-configured so it is plug and play, but in the event that onsite networking is required, a field visit by an engineer may cost around $1,500. While not common, it’s good to know this is often an additional fee.
We hope this ultrasound buyers guide helped prepare you for acquiring an ultrasound machine by detailing the different financing options available, how much you can expect to pay, and the different types of ultrasound machines on the market. Call +1 (855) 980-4578 or send an email to [email protected] to request a quote for an ultrasound machine or to speak with a medical equipment specialist.