View From The Field
Written By: Zack Poray
Opening the first week of June 2020, the Med One office in Morrisville, NC, is located just outside of Raleigh and directly serves thirty-five locations across both Carolinas. In the first four months since opening, our vehicles have logged over thirty thousand miles and have processed over one thousand pieces of equipment, which includes picking units up and cleaning each piece to make sure the unit is patient-ready. We have also been able to extend our service area into Virginia and even Maryland. With 2,500 pieces of Alaris equipment currently on rent, the North Carolina office is the next step in growing Med One up the East Coast. We ensure equipment is in excellent condition and is delivered as quickly as possible when requested.
Our daily schedule is built around pickups and deliveries, many transactions are scheduled in advance as most involve gathering large numbers of units and driving several hours to the location. The goal is always to route a loop of some kind, usually a morning stop near the ocean, an afternoon appointment in South Carolina, and a stop on the way back to the office. Whether there are multiple transactions or not, one appointment keeps the driver out of the office for most of the day because of the distance to accounts. On days without a scheduled drive, we clean and test the equipment on hand. We are always working to be ready to receive a request for immediate delivery of a few ventilators or a few dozen Alaris units.
At the beginning of August, we added a second employee with the addition of Luis Lazo as Biomed/Driver. He was trained in the Med One hub of California, and with a background in information systems technology, specifically cybersecurity intelligence, he fits well in the role of equipment tech. He has done an outstanding job in learning about, testing, and repairing equipment in the large numbers we have handled. He was recently able to prevent a ten-hour equipment swap late one Friday when I received a call about a strange equipment alarm. He called on his mentors and spoke with the hospital's biomedical department. Working over the phone, he was able to confirm with everyone by the end of the call that the unit in question was reliable and in good working order. With this addition to the team, we have had equipment constantly being processed while handling emergency orders and day-long drives across much of the East Coast.
While the operational side of an office can feel like a constant sprint, the pace changes very quickly when onsite for a delivery or pickup. We try to call our contact prior to arrival to confirm the time and best vehicle location. Once there, having to squeeze the box truck through a hospital parking lot (each one somehow in a constant state of construction) while lost and looking for the loading dock is only step one. It is growing common to have to first park at a loading dock then walk to a health and safety screening at the front entrance before coming back to the vehicle and beginning the job. Another storied moment is walking through the maze that is each hospital, up three floors, across a sky-bridge to a second building, then down one floor. These are my favorite opportunities to meet new faces from the places we work with and give people the patience and courtesy not always abundant in these busy hospitals.
Often being in a small office or sitting behind the wheel all day, I enjoy the customer service side of our job and doing as much as I can to help the people I meet. While in the field, we have had to unscrew Alaris units that were attached together or move accessories such as oxygen tank holders from one unit being picked up to the one being delivered to replace it. Whenever possible, as drivers, we work independently of our contacts, respecting their busy days and only calling them over to verify equipment picked up or delivered. Another common occurrence is having to ship parts or units not requested but needed to complete an order between offices as the Morrisville office learns how each account needs to have their equipment delivered.
We are constantly working in unison with the two nearby offices in Georgia and Florida. Most weeks include at least one halfway meeting to exchange equipment headed for repair, stock, or immediate delivery. It has been an honor to work with and learn from such experienced professionals who, at a moment's notice, jump into action for a meeting halfway between two offices while the third ships equipment directly to the hospital. The ability of these three teams to coordinate equipment moving between all offices within the timeline needed has saved several deals and probably lives as ventilators have been rushed between offices. Morrisville is truly privileged to work with this growing East Coast team. As each office expands in the number of accounts, staff, vehicles, and equipment, the growth may seem hectic, heading in every-which-way, but will always be done The Med One Way.Prev Article Next Article