Spectrum 2016 Spring

Spectrum 2016 Spring
Publication date: 
1 Mar 2016



Since this is the first Spectrum of 2016, I will say a happy new BEAI year to you all. It is great that we are starting the year with strong momentum, as we have just
completed four education sessions, part of the inaugural continuing education for clinical engineers series – more about that later in Spectrum.
In this issue, we also look back at last year’s Annual’s Scientific Conference, reflecting on the feedback from yourselves and we look forward to next year’s Conference. Plans are already well under way. If you have ideas or suggestions about this year’s conference, contact a member of the BEAI Executive who will progress your ideas. There are many challenges for those of us who work in the health service, not least of these is the ebb and flow of funding, not based on the tides but on the elections.
As the new political landscape of the 32nd Dáil embeds, we, as clinical engineers, will be thinking about how this a©ects us. Performance improvement, quality improvement and Plan Do Study Act (PDSA), have all become bywords in our hospitals. Value for money has always been a mantra for us. Our health service is financially challenged, and like all national health systems, it is very complex.
Our country is relatively small, and sadly, we do not have the wealth of some smaller countries like Switzerland, Luxembourg or even the Netherlands, so, our healthcare infrastructure has not had the investment necessary to meet the demands and expectations of our population.
For example, our acute hospitals do not operate at 90% capacity to allow them to be effcient, but, instead, some of our hospitals run at 110% capacity.
The pressure is on the four pillars of the health system (acute hospitals, primary healthcare, community healthcare and mental health) to deliver more effciently, to deliver better patient pathways, to accept more accountability, to be responsible for innovative models of care and to create capacity from within – without expansion.
What is demanded is nothing short of alchemy - a “seemingly magical process of transformation, creation, and/ or combination”. This is where clinical engineers and clinical engineering come in. There is an opportunity for clinical engineers to bring an innovative and process-orientated approach to patient pathways through the optimised use of medical devices. This problem-solving approach will be the basis for the theme of the BEAI Annual Scientific Conference 2016: clinical engineers –
alchemists of the health service, delivering effciencies solutions.
Meabh Smith
Chairperson of the BEAI



4 Editorial
5 News
8 Management of premature neonates
10 Continuing education series for clinical engineers 2015/2016
12 The history of defibrillation
14 Radiofrequency wireless technology
18 The importance of data collection
20 The EQUALS Initiative
22 Roving Reporter
24 Alfred Fannin’s Diary of the Easter Rising, 1916
26 The clinical engineer of the future
27 BEAI Conference
30 Diary

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