Sandhills Orthotics and Prosthetics in Pinehurst, NC was established in 2001 with a mission to compassionately and expertly provide orthotics and prosthetics to their patients. Included in that mission is a promise to utilize the latest cutting-edge technology to ensure the best possible outcomes.
As the director of prosthetics at Sandhills, Troy Decker, BOCP, takes this goal to heart. “Our patients look to our referral sources to see that we’re a cutting-edge facility and staying on top of what’s newest and best,” said Decker, and he intends to prove the Sandhills facility fits that criteria.
In the past, doing all the fabrication by hand took valuable time away from patients and evenings away from his family to keep up with the workload. Providing 3D printed prosthetics had always been on Decker’s radar as a solution, but he didn't dive for it until Galileo came along.
In November, 2022, Decker implemented 3D printing at Sandhills by introducing the Galileo program, and his team completely embraced the new process with proof of efficiency. Decker sees Galileo as another technical team on his side. “They’re just a text away, a phone call away, and are always so receptive.”
With the 3D printer on-site, Decker and his team can rapidly turn ideas into reality and gain control over their work. They know what’s in process, and they don’t have to wait for shipping services. “It has been a pretty seamless transition from what we were using to this program. We’ve had better communication and better turn-around times,” he mentioned.
Within 24 hours, they can send a scan in, print the order overnight, and have the patient try it on the next day. “We’re very sensitive to amputees and how quickly they get their prostheses to increase their quality of life,” Decker stated. “As far as providing better services to our patients, we can provide better turn-around times with 3D printing.”
Sandhill’s prosthetic technician, Thomas Vanaman, has also proven instrumental in fully taking advantage of Galileo. He assisted in researching and integrating the Galileo program, and he quickly took charge maintaining the machine and starting prints, which has taken significantly less time than previous work fully fabricating the check sockets.
Vanaman’s creativity has also transformed their printer into an advertising tool. He strategically placed the 3D printer in the facility's lobby, captivating visitors and proving the practice's commitment to innovation. “You’d be amazed how much interest that generates, and it shows patients that we’re doing our best to stay up with the latest, greatest technology,” said Decker.
Additionally, Vanaman had the brilliant idea to transform a 3D printed check socket into a lamp, wiring RGB colors into the socket to light it up and showcase it to teammates and patients alike. “It’s almost been a better marketing tool, without even planning on it,” Decker exclaimed in awe. “Everybody thinks it’s awesome!”
To those considering the leap into Galileo 3D printing, Decker’s message is clear: embrace it wholeheartedly. The benefits, from improved communication and turnaround time to enhanced patient care and a touch of innovation, are undeniable. “It’s a wonderful team of technicians that are ready to serve and answer questions.”
Having printed over 120 Galileo orders in 10 months, the Sandhills team remains headstrong in energizing their work with the program. Not only has it transformed Decker’s process, but it has helped maintain their reputation as a cutting-edge facility. “Getting Galileo is definitely a step in the right direction,” said Decker. “I would not look back!”
Sandhills Orthotics and Prosthetics is a clinic in Pinehurst, North Carolina focused on providing orthotic, prosthetic, and mastectomy services. They are dedicated to providing quality, patient-centered care in their community by sharing compassion and integrity, customizing options, and providing the latest cutting-edge products.
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