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Communicating to a lab

What do we choose to communicate?

I’ll meet you at the shops.
To the person most familiar with me, they may know which shops I’m talking about and the time I’m likely to be there.

In an example like this, I am confident to assume a strong likelihood of a successful outcome because of the audience I am pitching this communication to.

Labs, like all businesses, wish to engage us (their valued customers) with a sense of personalisation that lets both parties have a sense of comfort and loyalty to a brand. Good business in anyone’s book.

A downfall with this approach is in situations where the ‘shop’ isn’t known to the receiver and/or the time of meeting is unclear. In this instance, to ask a question may evoke a sense of distance between the parties. By one party acknowledging the lack of understanding innately creates a source of frustration that is not conducive to a longer term relationship.
“Why don’t you know this already?
I have said it a million times before!”.
In the medical / legal / commercial sense, the modern reality is that every instruction needs to be documented and appropriately authorised by the prescribing registered medical professional each time.

Each prescription needs to be expressly authorised, every time.

For the manufacture of orthoses, manufacturing labs survive on practitioner custom. Over time, numerous encounters have swayed processes to shy away from qualifying instructions in place for “customer is always right” service more akin to retail stores selling mass produced products. Pressure for labs to “quickly get on” with a best guess of what they think the customers need has become common place.

This fundamental change in product delivery has largely become unseen by the profession as technology has advanced to a point where it is extremely technical in nature and difficult to check on in the clinical environment.

Businesses like the Footprint Hub are better able discern which manufacturing processes are most appropriate for their customers requirements. The Footprint Hub can provide clarity and recommend options, so practitioners are better able to choose which production pathway is best for their particular patient needs. Each time.

This is the very definition of bespoke manufacture.
Remember:
Communicate the pertinent facts, in an easy to read, logical format with clear (scans) pictures that relate the captured position directly to the orthoses you wish to create.
The reward:
Consistent, successful, team based outcomes.

What forms of communication do we use to manufacture orthoses?

Below is a summary key elements to consider when submitting information to a lab for the manufacture of custom foot orthoses. It has been sourced from a series of direct survays with the management ans staff of numerous labs from across the globe:
  • Written – A complete, correctly formatted and authorised lab prescription form
  • Visually representing the foot to be modelled
  • Scans / Casts
  • Joint congruence
  • Desired position in space (or relevant adjustments noted)
  • Artifact free
  • 2D Pictures
  • Scaled
  • Definable Reference points
  • Verbal?? – All changes to be authorised by written confirmation. Always.
  • A quick PodByte.

    ” Without a good plan, a goal is just a wish. “
    Check out more videos and discussion topics at ” PodBytes “. A collection of tools designed to help you on your journey through the challenge of biomechanics, 3D design, manufacture and its delivery.

    Try this at home...

    Think of your favourite famous place to visit, with the favourite people in your life, on a favourite holiday excursion. Good isn’t it.

    Take a mental picture of the place. Remember everything you can about the picture.
    Now write down some instructions telling a complete stranger (someone that doesn’t know you) how to paint that picture.

    Simple rules. No names of places or things that look the same as the place in your head. Only shapes and positions of these shapes within the picture can be given. This needs to be a custom picture.

    Try this at home with your friends and family. Have fun to see what the painted pictures turn out like!

    This is the same game that occurs everyday in custom orthoses manufacture…