Sunday, January 19, 2014


When it comes to selling stroke-recovery machines to therapists, the phrase "another tool in the toolbox" is all the rage. Vendors (sellers) use the toolbox idea to soft-peddle to therapists. Here's how the pitch goes...

"We have this great new machine. It works great. Now, I'm not saying to pitch what you use. I'm just saying that this machine of mine is...another tool in the toolbox." But therapy time is very (very), very limited. So, Ms. Therapist, if you use their machine, there'll be no time for what you have been using. And the vendor knows this. 

But the vendor is scared to say their version of the truth which is, "My machine works better than what you have been using" because that suggests the therapist has been providing something less than the best. (And you don't insult the client, right?) But that's exactly what they are saying. My machine works better than what you usually use... Instead, the vender, fearing being considered condescending treats the clinician like a child and says, "You're doing just fine. This is just another tool for your toolbox." Its like telling a child, "I love Joey, your (stinking, puked-on) Teddy bear  too. But lets just get another Teddy. You can keep Joey too (in the garbage!) but we'll buy you this new one."

I find this even more condescending to therapists than giving it to them straight. Vendors, if you think your thingy works better, say so. Not to is spineless because you've not stepped up for the people who need you. No, not therapists (your bank account or your boss). You've not stepped up for survivors. If your thing works, get behind it. And if you are truly behind it, soft-peddling just makes you someone who'd rather make the sale than do the right thing.

Of course, if you want $ over integrity, you'll get neither.


vb said...

Dear Peter,

Interesting view on the subject.

In a related subject, in your opinion, which are the most important properties that a new rehab tech should incorporate (e.g, price, simplicity of use,...).

Assuming of course that was already subject of extensive clinical validation.



Peter G Levine said...

Thanks for the comment. In answer I'd say, read this:

Mike said...

Too bad, this is the age where healthcare is more about doing business than caring.Money rules everything nowadays.

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