NHS leasing wider range of medical equipment, according to SFS
3 February 2013
Leasing in the NHS is growing in popularity and extending to a
wider range of equipment, according to a new analysis by Siemens
Financial Services (SFS) of leasing activity in 2012.
Although diagnostic imaging equipment still constituted the
largest proportion of equipment tendered in 2012, there was an 8%
increase in the number of leasing tenders for a variety of other
medical equipment including incubators, pressure relieving
mattresses, haemodialysis machines, automated endoscope reprocessors
and washer disinfectors.
These findings suggest that leasing is growing in popularity as NHS
trusts seek to acquire the most up-to-date equipment and underpin
patient service quality and efficiencies, without tying up scarce
capital, focusing funds instead on front-line service delivery.
Chris Wilkinson, Head of Sales, Public Sector Leasing at SFS,
comments, “Finance managers in healthcare need to master the
challenges of maintaining high service quality standards in the face
of budget constraints and efficiency targets. With capital being a
scarce commodity nowadays, NHS Trusts need to fund frontline
services using a financially sustainable method.
"Asset financing techniques such as leasing help align costs with
the efficiency savings enabled by modern medical equipment, thereby
allowing healthcare organisations to make affordable technology
investments even at a time of downward capital pressure.
“The increasing proportion of healthcare equipment being acquired
through asset financing techniques can help free up “frozen capital”
— inefficiently deployed capital funding as a result of up-front
equipment purchasing — in the healthcare sector for frontline
services. Currently, close to £2 billion of capital is “frozen” in
the UK healthcare sector. Using asset finance, financial managers
can harness private sector capital and spread the cost of equipment
in regular monthly payments over the financing period. In addition,
such financing arrangements can often incorporate service,
maintenance and technology upgrade during the leasing term.”
In 2012, West Suffolk Hospital hospital decided to acquire three
static and one mobile Mammomat Inspiration Full Field Digital
Mammography systems from Siemens Healthcare after a competitive
tendering. To finance the significant investment, the hospital opted
for a lease provided by Siemens Financial Services (SFS) in a
separate competitive tender.
Nigel Beeton, Imaging Services Manager at West Suffolk Hospital,
said, “To balance the need to drive cost savings while ensuring the
highest standard of patient care, financial sustainability has been
a fundamental element in our investment strategy. The finance lease
from SFS allowed us to realize the diagnostic and clinical
efficiencies delivered by digital machinery while removing the need
for a one-off capital payment on the balance sheet.
"Instead, the lease agreement spread the lease payments to assist
with asset and financial planning at the Trust. This finance model
has enabled us to acquire state-of-the-art technology for the
delivery of high quality and efficient healthcare services.
"Siemens’ expertise and experience in delivering innovative
medical equipment and technology means that SFS has a proficient
understanding of the medical equipment market. We are very pleased
with the specialist finance solution that is tailored to our
specific needs and individual requirements. Combined with the very
competitive prices, the finance offering, together with the
first-class equipment, represents a true value for us.”
Siemens Financial Services Whitepaper. Melting the Iceberg, May