Remote Patient Monitoring Devices: Lease Vs. Buy
When practices implement a Remote Patient Monitoring (RPM) program, one critical decision they face is whether to lease or buy the patient monitoring devices.
Right upfront, it’s safe to say there is no one right answer.
The decision will largely depend on what makes the most sense for your practice. Factors to consider include your budget, the size of your program, and your goals for the program.
Since those factors will vary for every practice, you can see why either option may work for any given practice.
Of the over 400 clients we’ve worked with, it’s just about an even split between leasing and buying RPM devices.
Below we’ll examine the benefits of both options so you can make the best decision for your needs.
Benefits of Leasing RPM Devices
There are several benefits to leasing RPM devices.
Low Upfront Cost
One of the biggest advantages of leasing RPM devices is that your initial costs are low. Since you avoid the upfront cost of purchasing the device outright, you’ll be able to reduce the overall cost of implementation.
After all, one of the more common goals in implementing an RPM program in the first place is to reduce your operational expenses through reduced hospital stays, readmissions, and less frequent office visits.
Leasing RPM devices allows you to be flexible to patient needs.
You can more readily update your medical equipment due to low upfront costs, giving you access to the latest and greatest devices.
Without purchasing the equipment, you avoid the costs of depreciating equipment going unused and in turn, are able to provide better care for your patients with the newest and best devices available.
Of course, the extent to which it allows for flexibility can be impacted by the length of your leasing contract. A long leasing contract can limit your flexibility and ends up being one of the benefits of purchasing the RPM device (we discuss in more detail below).
Benefits of Buying RPM Devices
While leasing has its benefits, there are many practices that prefer to purchase their RPM devices. We’ll cover some of the benefits of buying RPM devices below.
Cheaper Overall Cost
While leasing has a lower initial cost, due to the ongoing monthly nature of leasing, you’ll pay more in the long run.
By purchasing your RPM devices, you’ll save significantly more money over the life of your RPM program.
Additionally, the leasing vs buying decision can depend on your budget. Buying RPM devices would count as an expense towards your capital budget, while leasing would fall under your operational budget.
Some practices have higher capital budgets than operational budgets in efforts to keep monthly per-patient costs low. If your practice follows this approach, buying would be the better option for you.
Avoid Lengthy Contracts
There are many companies out there that lease RPM devices, including ThoroughCare.
Depending on which company you lease through, you can get locked into a lengthy contract. A long contract can limit your ability to be agile and responsive to patient needs.
By purchasing your RPM device, you have total control of your devices. Want to upgrade to new devices? You can do so on your own schedule.
While there is a downside of being stuck with the sunk cost of old, outdated RPM devices, you do have the potential to sell them to recuperate some of your costs.
Choosing The Right Option For You
As we mentioned at the beginning of this article, both options have their advantages and disadvantages. Ultimately, you need to examine your own practice to determine the best option for you.
We told you there were 3 major factors that you should consider: your budget, the size of your program, and your program goals.
In examining your budget, you’ll want to consider how much room in the budget you have.
Can you afford a higher upfront cost to save money in the long run? Is your operational budget managed very tightly? Then buying may be right for you.
Are you looking for faster implementation and lower upfront costs? Then leasing may be the better choice.
Some groups even start out by leasing the devices due to the low upfront costs, but once the revenue from the program starts coming in they may consider purchasing the devices.
The size of your program plays a big part as well, and it relates back to cost. With a large scale program, the initial investment in purchasing RPM devices may seem daunting.
But if you can focus on the big picture, the profits realized through purchasing devices for a large-scale RPM program can be immense.
Regardless of which option you choose, an RPM program will pay for itself quickly. By buying an RPM device through ThoroughCare, practices usually recover the cost of the device within two months of running their program.
If you want more information on RPM, its benefits, and tips on starting your own program, check out our Learning Center article.
We’ve helped many practices implement successful RPM programs over the years through our intuitive, user-friendly software. Request a software demo with us today to discover how we can help you!