Stockport renews maintenance contract

Althea is pleased to announce that Stockport NHS Foundation Trust has renewed its maintenance service for a further three years. The contract for diagnostic imaging equipment, including two CT scanners, is further to the success of the previous three-year service which began in June 2012.

Our maintenance service is the ISO 9001:2008-accredited multi-vendor managed maintenance service that is designed to reduce costs and maximise equipment availability with industry-leading response and rectification times. Flexible services are available with a choice of cover levels and maintenance providers.

The service at Stockport will provide the Trust with cost savings and operational benefits including: a choice of engineering options; a single point-of-contact service centre for all service requests; guaranteed uptime; and improved detailed reporting on equipment performance.

Martin Thornton, Business Development Manager commented, “We are delighted with the renewal of this contract – it serves as testament to the success of our service and new competitive pricing structure.  Our range of services delivers measurable cost and efficiency savings for the management and maintenance of critical medical equipment. Hospitals are able to make significant savings on their non-pay spend and remodel the way they purchase and implement the maintenance of their medical equipment, achieving improved uptime performance and, in turn, better productivity.”

Althea continues geographic expansion with acquisition of Sigil in France

Althea (formerly Pantheon Healthcare Group), today announced the acquisition of French diagnostic imaging service provider Sigil.  Complementing Althea’s recent business expansion into France with its core multi-vendor service and managed equipment service offerings, the acquisition of Sigil will accelerate the development and adoption of more efficient asset management and medical equipment maintenance service solutions for public and private sector hospitals and imaging centres.  Already present in 12 European countries, Althea’s expansion into France will enable the first local market offerings of integrated, vendor-neutral managed equipment and maintenance service solutions for all radiology and biomedical device modalities.

Based in Eysines, Sigil is an ISO 13485 quality certified company providing maintenance service for high-technology Radiology equipment.  The company also offers service and installation of x-ray tubes in public hospitals, including capacity to refurbish and restore medical parts with CE marking, quality assurance consulting and the sale of refurbished systems and conventional x-ray tubes.  Sigil’s combination of service offerings and their equipment-related solutions will be enhanced with the integration of Althea’s services portfolio as well as its pan-European supply chain and service support infrastructure.  Building on the last twenty years of experience providing local, expert multi-vendor and multi-modality services in France, Sigil’s service delivery platform will also be expanded by Althea to provide additional managed equipment service solutions to better meet the increasing demands within the French market for more efficient capital expenditures and reduced maintenance operating expenses over the equipment lifecycle.

Althea’s Vice President of Business Development and General Manager for Western Europe, said, “The purchase of Sigil will accelerate our growth within the French market not only as a geographic expansion but because France represents a high-growth market for independent managed equipment services and managed maintenance solutions for the public and private healthcare sector.  Sigil’s team has the same passion for customer support and technical expertise that Althea is applying with ISO 13485 quality service throughout Europe.”

Althea’s global presence and pan-European leadership team will support Sigil’s existing service infrastructure and customer base, which already includes many large public hospital groups.  In addition to Sigil’s Bordeaux location handling x-ray tube refurbishment, the company currently maintains a large service facility in Massy, which is equipped for equipment staging and field engineer training for MRI, CT and x-ray systems as well as logistical support for packaging of x-ray tubes and parts delivery.  These service support facilities will be expanded and integrated within the Althea pan-European supply chain.

Yves Brohan, Sigil Founder and General Manager, added, “Sigil has for many years offered an independent solution for imaging services that is unique for our customers in France and explains the loyalty we have received from them.  We value professionalism, reliability, savings for our customer and, above all, a responsibility for the highest levels of service toward them.  Althea shares these values and will support Sigil with the staff and resources that will allow us to serve a larger customer base throughout the public and private French healthcare market.”

New maintenance contract goes live at Doncaster & Bassetlaw

Althea is pleased to announce the start of a new maintenance service with Doncaster and Bassetlaw Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust. The five-year contract is for the maintenance of over 100 items of diagnostic imaging equipment including two CTs, two MRs, and nine ultrasounds. The equipment is spread across five hospital sites, a GP surgery, and a prison.

The Trust cares for a population of 420,000 with a vision to become the best healthcare provider in its class and we will help them achieve this goal. The Trust procured our services through the North of England NHS Commercial Procurement Collaborative (NOECPC) maintenance Framework and is one of 31 acute Trusts who can access this Framework free of charge as an NOECPC member.

The go-live follows an audit of the Trust’s equipment and transfer of management letters being issued to the relevant incumbent maintenance providers. Through our Service Centre, the single-point-of-contact for all equipment maintenance, the majority of equipment will be maintained using in-house engineers and independent service organisations. This use of resource ensures the best value for the Trust, whilst ensuring key performance indicators are met and equipment is maintained to the highest standards.

Althea’s Business Development Management commented, “We are thrilled to add Doncaster and Bassetlaw Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust to its expanding customer base. We will work with the Trust, sharing their values of commitment to quality and focus on innovation for improvement to provide them with the best service for their requirements.’

Jayne Fielden, Doncaster’s Superintendent Radiographer, said “The approach of having different cover levels and maintenance providers all under one contract means that we have been able to tailor the service to our needs. Having worked with Althea to prepare for go-live we are delighted that the service has started and are excited about realising the benefits.”