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What Medical Equipment Repairers Do

Medical equipment repairers install, maintain, and repair patient care equipment.


Medical equipment repairers typically do the following:

Medical equipment repairers, also known as biomedical equipment technicians (BMET), repair a wide variety of electronic, electromechanical, and hydraulic equipment used in hospitals and health practitioners’ offices. They may work on patient monitors, defibrillators, medical imaging equipment (X rays, CAT scanners, and ultrasound equipment), voice-controlled operating tables, and electric wheelchairs, as well as on sophisticated medical equipment that dentists and eye doctors use.

If a machine has problems or is not functioning to its potential, the repairer may have to adjust the mechanical or hydraulic parts, or adjust the software to bring electronic equipment back into calibration. To do their work, medical equipment repairers use a variety of tools. They may use hand tools, such as screwdrivers, wrenches, and soldering irons. They may use electronic tools, such as multimeters (an electronic measuring device that combines several measures) and computers. Many of the pieces of equipment that they maintain and repair use specialized software, and repairers use that software to adjust the machines.

Many doctors, particularly specialty practitioners, rely on complex medical devices to run tests and diagnose patients, and they must be confident that the readings are accurate. Therefore, medical equipment repairers sometimes do routine scheduled maintenance to ensure that all equipment is in good working order.

In a hospital setting, medical equipment repairers must be comfortable working around patients because repairs occasionally must take place while equipment is being used. When this is the case, the repairer must take great care to ensure that repairs do not disturb patients.

Although some medical equipment repairers are trained to fix a variety of equipment, others specialize in repairing one or a small number of machines. For less complicated equipment, such as electric hospital beds, workers make repairs as needed.

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2012-13 Edition