Resource Hub


Topic : Type : Report


Surgical instruments are essential for the delivery of modern healthcare. Their use is so widespread that they are easily taken for granted.

The supplier base for instruments is diverse, including small, family owned businesses, and large multinational corporations. What they have in common are complex manufacturing processes, global supply chains, broad product ranges to suit varying clinical needs and product development with the capacity to innovate as required.

This paper details the role of surgical instruments and how they bring value to the NHS. It highlights the vast range and number of instruments that are needed in the NHS at any one time and, to ensure that these instruments continue to be safe and fit for purpose, makes the following recommendations:

  1. Investment in the replacement of aged surgical instrument inventory should be considered as a priority for NHS spending.
  2. The procurement of surgical instruments should be based on overall quality and value, with the demonstration of strong ethical and resilient supply chains recognised and rewarded in purchasing decisions.
  3. There should be a focused, sustained and appropriately accredited programme of education into the management and maintenance of surgical instruments. Such a programme could be delivered in conjunction with industry.