MedLabNews

MedLabNews is our quarterly magazine for medical, clinical and diagnostic laboratories. It’s the only magazine dedicated to the UK market and contains all the latest news, features and products for this market.

We’re on Twitter (@MedLabNews) and www.facebook.com/medlabnews and you can see all the latest news on the Laboratory News website.

Check out the latest MedLabNews video to find out what’s coming up in the September issue:

And here’s Phil’s comment:

Don’t look a gift horse in the mouth goes the old saying – but what if the gift in question really isn’t appropriate?

Some 75% of the medical devices donated to developing countries are currently lying unused, largely as the infrastructure and expertise in these countries just cannot sustain their use. As well meaning as it clearly is for donations to be made – it is clear that inappropriate medical technology can not only be useless, but maybe even a hindrance to medical staff already working in very difficult circumstances.

At a recent conference, leading medical device engineers, donors and charities addressed this issue; their conclusion was that the environment and challenges faced by the medical profession in the developing world are so far removed from those of the western world that it requires a wholesale change in the mindset of giving equipment.

Speaking at the Institution of Mechanical Engineers conference Professor Chris Lavy brought the point home when he said: “One of the newest hospitals in sub-Saharan Africa was built with infrared sensors to turn the taps on in the operating theatres. Wonderful idea but is it really appropriate in a country where there are no other infra red controlled taps and no engineer to fix them? Within a year most of them had failed, some in the off position and some in the on position.”

And of course it stands to reason that medical equipment engineered specifically for such a challenging environment then it will fare better in that environment.

Yet back in the western world, the medical device community face a challenging environment of a different kind in the form of changing electrical equipment standards – see p17 for a run down.

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