Category: Ergonomic Workstations

24 Feb 2021

Section 179 Tax Deduction

Section 179 Tax DeductionTax time will be here before you know it. Now is a good time to start pulling together your business expenses and documentation from this past year to ensure you are capitalizing on all the tax deductions you are entitled to as a business owner. The Section 179 tax deduction is an important tax saver for business owners that should not be overlooked.

This deduction can and does change from year to year (and has even changed within a tax year). Therefore, it is important to be aware of your deduction limit each year including the bonus depreciation which may also change depending on the tax year.

What is the Section 179 Tax Deduction?

The Section 179 tax deduction is a section of the IRS tax code originally designed to provide incentives and tax relief for small businesses although large businesses may also benefit from this deduction.

Section 179 “allows businesses to deduct the full purchase price of qualifying equipment and/or software purchased or financed during the tax year. That means that if you buy (or lease) a piece of qualifying equipment, you can deduct the FULL PURCHASE PRICE from your gross income.” This U.S. government incentive is designed to encourage businesses to buy the equipment they need while investing in themselves and their businesses.

Who Qualifies for the Section 179 Tax Deduction?

For the 2020 tax year, the good news is all businesses that finance, lease, or purchase used or new equipment outright totaling less than $3,630,000 should qualify for the Section 179 deduction.

More specifically, $1,040,000 of business assets qualify for the complete Section 179 deduction in 2020. That amount is reduced dollar for dollar when the amount of qualified assets used for business purposes reaches $2,590,000.

What Requirements Must Be Met to Claim the Section 179 Deduction?

Any equipment, vehicles, or software claimed as a tax deduction under Section 179 that is used for both personal and business purposes (such as cell phones for example) must meet the “More Than 50 Percent Business-Use” requirement. This means that the equipment, vehicles, or software being claimed must be used for business purposes more than 50% of the time that it is used for it to qualify for the Section 179 tax deduction.

What Equipment Qualifies for the Section 179 Deduction?

The following equipment “generally” qualifies for the Section 179 deduction and may be new or used—however it must be “new” to you as a business owner for it to be claimed as a deduction. It must also be purchased (and used) between January 1 and December 31 of the tax year in which you are wanting to claim it as a tax deduction against your business. The term “purchased” includes equipment you have leased, financed, or purchased outright with your own funds.

Equipment that generally qualifies includes:

  • •Machines and a variety of equipment purchased for business use such as computers and “off-the-shelf” computer software.
  • •Equipment purchased and used for business and personal use (the section 179 tax deduction is based on the percentage of time you use this equipment for business purposes).
  • •Office equipment and furniture.
  • •Different types of tangible personal property used for business purposes.
  • •Specific types of improvements to existing non-residential buildings such as roofing improvements, fire suppression installations, security and alarm systems, and heating, ventilation, and air conditioning improvements.
  • •Non-structural equipment and property attached to the building where you do business.
  • •Vehicles used for business purposes (gross vehicle weight must exceed 6,000 lbs).

 

What’s the Difference Between Section 179 and Bonus Depreciation?

Bonus depreciation is taken after the Section 179 deduction is applied. Bonus depreciation usually benefits larger businesses that exceed the spending cap for new capital equipment in a given tax year (currently $2,590,000 for 2020).

It is also important to note that bonus depreciation is not offered every tax year. However, it is available for the 2020 tax year at a rate of 100%.

The most notable change for bonus depreciation in 2020 is that it may be applied to both new and used equipment, as long as the equipment is new to the business owner. This is a change from previous years in which bonus depreciation could only be applied to new equipment.

Businesses that experience a net loss this past year still qualify to deduct some of the cost of the equipment they purchased and then they may carry-forward the remaining loss to the following tax year. Similarly, if a business has no taxable profit during this current tax year, it may carry forward the loss experienced on equipment purchases to the subsequent tax year.

Is There a Way to Maximize My Tax Savings with Section 179?

Yes there is! One of the best ways to maximize your tax savings in 2020 is to lease or finance equipment purchases according to the Section 179 Qualified Financing rules. This is because as a business owner, you will only have to make the required lease or financing payments for the equipment during the year. However, you are entitled to deduct the full purchase price of the equipment you purchased in 2020, regardless of whether it is new or used.

In effect, financing or leasing equipment and then taking the full Section 179 tax deduction can easily help business owners save more money in taxes than they spent in finance or lease payments throughout the year.

Is It Possible to Preserve the Cash Flow in My Business and Still Take the Section 179 Deduction?

Absolutely! This has been and continues to be a year filled with uncertainty. Protecting cash flow for unanticipated expenses is a wise business idea. As discussed above, choosing to purchase equipment by leasing it can also put more tax dollars back in your business.

To keep lease payments as low as possible to preserve cash flow, consider asking about a non-tax capital lease. This type of lease will allow you to make smaller payments, protect your cash flow, and allow you to write-off the full price of the equipment you purchased up to the deduction limit— all while making the smallest payments possible.

How Do I Calculate My Potential Savings Using Section 179 on My Next Purchase?

That’s a great question. Fortunately, Section 179.org has an easy calculator that can help you estimate your potential savings if you are considering buying equipment this year.

To give you an idea of just how significant the tax and equipment savings can be for a business owner, Section 179.org provides this example:

“Using a $75,000 equipment cost for a sample calculation shows how taking advantage of the Section 179 Deduction can significantly lower the true cost of the equipment purchased, financed or leased. In our example, $75,000 in equipment purchased has a true cost of $48,750. That’s $26,250 saved. Would you like an extra “25 grand-plus” this year on equipment you needed anyway?”

How Do I Ensure I Get the Section 179 Tax Deduction?

It is important to know you must elect to take the Section 179 tax deduction for business equipment you have purchased, leased, or financed during the calendar year. It is NOT automatically applied to your tax return.

To elect to take the Section 179 deduction, complete Part 1 of Form 4562 from the IRS and attach it to your tax return. Or speak with your tax preparer and tell them you want to elect to take the Section 179 deduction.

In addition, the Section 179 deduction is taken on an “item-by-item” basis. Therefore, you can choose to claim the deduction for only some of the equipment and/or software you purchased and not all of it if you choose.

Can You Use Section 179 Every Tax Year?

Yes, the Section 179 tax deduction can be used for business expenses and depreciation every year that you incur these expenses in your business. However, it is important to keep in mind that changes are made to Section 179 every year, and sometimes throughout the year. Therefore, be sure to stay informed about these tax code changes, what equipment, property, and improvements qualify, and what deductions you might be entitled to.

Be sure to speak to your tax preparer if you are not sure what deductions you are entitled to or prior to making large equipment or software purchases for your business to determine the most tax efficient way to do this.

Double Black Imaging provides business owners with medical displays for PACS, monitors, and software as well as ergonomic workstations that qualify for the Section 179 deduction. Contact us at (844) 879-2247 with your business needs today and be sure to tell our diagnostic imaging specialists you want your purchase to qualify for the Section 179 deduction.

Contact our diagnostic imaging experts

 

Source List:

https://www.section179.org
https://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-dft/i4562–dft.pdf
https://www.crestcapital.com/section_179_bonus?_ga=2.120781388.519583165.1608581164-847429404.1608581164

09 Dec 2020

Sedentary Nature in Radiology

The occupational hazards of radiology are well known: exposure to radiation, splashes with contrast media, bodily fluid exposure, and stress to name a few. Another less recognized danger for those in the profession is the sedentary nature of the work.

It’s estimated that diagnostic radiologists spend more than 8 hours a day sitting at their computers and workstations. Understanding how the sedentary nature in radiology affects a radiologist’s health and the quality of their work is important for preventing health issues and optimizing patient care. Knowing how to reduce the risks related to this workplace hazard is also important so those working in the profession know how to protect themselves.

 

What Is a Sedentary Lifestyle or Career?

The U.S. Department of Labor defines sedentary work as “exerting up to 10 pounds of force occasionally or a negligible amount of force frequently to lift, carry, push, pull, or otherwise move objects, including the human body. Sedentary work involves sitting most of the time, but may involve walking or standing for brief periods of time. Jobs may be defined as Sedentary when walking and standing are required only occasionally and all other Sedentary criteria are met.” By this definition, most of the work performed in radiology meets this criteria.

Researchers confirm this stating most image interpretation done by diagnostic radiologists is sedentary with radiologists sitting at a computer workstation to perform this work.

 

How Being Sedentary Affects Quality of Work and Radiologists’ Health

The sedentary nature in radiology contributes to stress which has been shown to decrease job satisfaction and lead to poor mental health outcomes. However, it’s also thought that stress associated with sedentary radiology work may contribute to poor workstation ergonomics. This may lead to an array of work-related musculoskeletal injuries that 30%-60% of radiologists report such as eyestrain, neck & back pain, carpal tunnel syndrome, and headaches.

And experts like Rebecca L. Seidel, MD agree that correct ergonomics are essential for the productivity, performance, and well-being of radiologists.

The risks of a primarily sedentary lifestyle for the general population are well-known and include health problems that carry high risks of morbidity and mortality such as:

  • •Hypertension
  • •Obesity
  • •Diabetes

Other diseases attributable to a sedentary lifestyle include cardiovascular disease and certain types of cancer with even higher mortality rates resulting from these diseases as sedentary behavior increases.

In fact, researchers point out that being sedentary contributes to all causes of mortality—not just those listed above. And this increased mortality risk exists even in those who engage in physical exercise regularly outside of their sedentary jobs. Excessive time spent sitting or in minimal movement is believed to contribute to a slower metabolism and many of the negative effects mentioned above.

 

How Radiologists Can Improve Health at Work

While a significant amount of a diagnostic radiologist’s job is sedentary, there are things that can be done to mitigate the health risks of sitting for prolonged periods of time. Experts studying the sedentary behavior in radiology suggest radiologists can improve their health by understanding and applying the concept of NEAT to their work.

The acronym NEAT refers to “nonexercise activity thermogenesis”. It includes activities of daily living that require energy for the body to perform such as walking, standing, sitting, and fidgeting. NEAT excludes sleeping, eating, and sports or fitness activities.

The concept of NEAT was studied by Levine et al. to determine whether or not fidgeting-like activities could counteract weight gain in sedentary adults who were overfed. Surprisingly, they discovered even low energy expenditure fidgeting activities were effective in maintaining metabolic rate and deterring weight gain in study subjects.

Fidgeting-like activities that radiologists could incorporate into their work that have been shown to increase energy expenditure significantly and reduce the negative effects of prolonged motionless sitting include using a mouse at the computer, typing, and tapping one’s foot.

In addition to making these relatively small changes, researchers suggest there are other things radiologists can do to increase NEAT and help ward off chronic health problems related to being sedentary.

Some of these things include:

1.  Drink more water

Drinking enough water has a number of health benefits. Water is needed for several important bodily functions. It also helps suppress appetite and control weight gain. Eating more foods with a higher water content can help reduce caloric intake and result in increased satiety after eating. To incorporate more activity with higher water consumption, use a small water bottle so you’re required to get up and refill it often.

2.  Consider standing to perform some work

Researchers found that standing motionless or standing and fidgeting also increases NEAT significantly compared to sitting motionless or fidgeting while seated. Most PACS workstations can be elevated which allows some reading and dictating to be done while standing. It’s also important to add some of the fidgeting-like activities mentioned earlier while standing since this significantly increases energy expenditure compared to standing motionless. However, it’s also important to keep in mind that periods of prolonged standing may lead to venous stasis and back pain so it’s best to keep moving and avoid any one position for too long.

3.  Walk more throughout the day

The benefits of walking are well-known and include increased calorie expenditure. Consider communicating about a patient with a colleague in your facility face-to-face rather than via phone or email. In addition to ensuring better communication, you’ll be taking care of your own health. Taking short breaks from radiological workstations has also been shown to help one stay focused, reduce eyestrain, and calm the mind.

4.  Perform some simple exercises at your workstation

Incorporate some simple exercises throughout the day at your workstation such as neck rolls, side stretches, seated spinal twists, and leg lifts. These basic exercises have been shown to reduce fatigue and decreases in metabolism while increasing NEAT expenditure and only take a couple minutes to complete.

5.  Include a variety of calorie-burning activities in your workday

Although the following activities haven’t been studied specifically with radiologists or in relation to radiology reading rooms, researchers suggest radiologists consider incorporating some of these activities into their workday to keep metabolism elevated and help reduce the likelihood of chronic diseases associated with being sedentary.

  • •Increase fiber intake which is associated with increased and prolonged satiety and reduces the incidence of obesity, hypertension, diabetes, coronary artery disease, and stroke.
  • •Be mindful of your caloric intake versus energy expenditure.
  • •Avoid eating 2 hours before bed when you’ll be more sedentary.
  • •Try to get 7-9 hours of restful, uninterrupted sleep at night since 4 hours of sleep or less over a prolonged period of time is associated with reduced metabolism.
  • •Set the timer on your phone or smart watch as a reminder to get up and stretch or move for the last 5 minutes of each hour.
  • •Consider tracking your activity level such as your daily steps as well as your food and water intake on a smart device such as your phone or smart watch. Make small improvements each day.

6.  Explore radiology room fitness workstations

Treadmills and elliptical machines are no longer equipment found only in fitness facilities. The benefits of incorporating this kind of equipment at standing workstations include an energy expenditure 200% greater than standing at rest. These machines are designed to be quiet enough for use in reading rooms and work well for home offices too. While cost and having adequate space to accommodate equipment may be a concern, installing even a single treadmill workstation that staff can rotate through may help reduce time sitting and provide staff with healthier ways to work.

 

Why Work With Double Black Imaging to Build a Healthier Workstation?

Double Black Imaging is proud to be known for its exceptional and unparalleled customer service in addition to our high standards that exceed other industry providers. We use advanced technology combined with the latest research to design innovative and reliable medical displays, ergonomic workstations, and software solutions to help make imaging more efficient and reduce healthcare costs.

At Double Black Imaging, our specialists will work with you to create the perfect workstation that takes into consideration your health as well as cost and space constraints. Contact us today at (844) 879-2247.

Contact our diagnostic imaging experts

 

Source List:

https://www.wajradiology.org/article.asp?issn=1115-3474;year=2018;volume=25;issue=1;spage=28;epage=33;aulast=Ogenyi

https://www.ajronline.org/doi/10.2214/AJR.15.15496

https://www.dol.gov/sites/dolgov/files/owcp/dfec/regs/compliance/owcp-5c.pdf

https://www.radiologytoday.net/archive/rt0620p14.shtml

https://www.unm.edu/~lkravitz/Sports%20Physiology/SedentaryLifestyle.pdf

https://pubs.rsna.org/doi/full/10.1148/rg.2018180030

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6857261/

https://academic.oup.com/ajcn/article/72/6/1451/4729468

23 Oct 2020

Different Types of Ergonomic Radiology Workstations

With the radiology technology developing at breath-taking speed, the number of images viewed daily has increased in radiology departments. This has led to several workplace-based problems such as repetitive stress injuries, visual problems, headaches, and musculoskeletal problems in radiologists, who spend a lot of time at their workstations. With 58% of radiologists reporting symptoms of repetitive stress injury and many spending over eight hours a day at their desks, it is vital to ensure that workstations are set up correctly to avoid these types of health problems.

Double Black Imaging offers a wide range of ergonomic workstation options to fit your working environment. The expert technicians consider available space, adjustment patterns, ambient lighting, and other aspects to make customized recommendations.

 

Ergonomic fixed-height desks

Ergonomic Fixed-Height DeskA fixed-height desk is a cost-effective option of setting up an ergonomic workstation. Double Black Imaging’s customizable options allow you to design your workstation according to the ergonomic parameters that match your needs and workflow.

With the ability to add unlimited accessories, you can easily create an ergonomic workstation at less cost than a sit-stand workstation. Although not as universally ergonomic as a sit to stand station, any fixed height desk can be converted to a sit-stand workstation with the new Workfit-TX. Users can also enhance their physical support with the Verte Radiology Chairs to maximize comfort and reduce back and neck pain.

 

Electric sit to stand workstations

Sit to Stand Radiology WorkstationSit to stand workstations ensure the comfort of the radiologist. Ergonomically developed to allow radiologists to move and change positions, they are designed to promote health and wellbeing. Although initially more costly than a fixed desk, they can be quickly adjusted to fit the needs of every user, meaning that they are suitable for the whole team. Double Black Imaging’s range of sit to stand workstations have been designed to support the heavy load of all the monitors and accessories required in a radiology department.

From the innovative Phoenix Tilting Ergonomic Workstation to the popular classic, the Sit & Stand Station, you are sure to find the workstation that will enhance your health, your workflow, and your diagnostic capabilities with Double Black Imaging.

 

Wall mounts

Radiology Monitor Wall MountIf you are looking for a space-saving, cost-effective option in your radiology department then a wall mount may be the option for you. Height adjustable, with the ability to add keyboards and dual monitors, they are one of the least expensive options to consider. Quick and easy to install, a range of configurations are available from Double Black Imaging.

 

Medical carts

Medical Monitor Wheeled CartsThe benefit of a medical computer cart is portability. Compact and mobile, you can move a medical computer cart with you as required. It is important to remember that a medical cart cannot hold as many monitors as a static desk and is not as ergonomic. However, it provides you with a low cost, mobile, and space-saving workstation option.

 

Additional workstation options to consider. 

When setting up a workstation, there are several additional options to consider.

  • Wellness screens are a protective barrier that helps prevent the spread of germs. Made of clear acrylic, these screens are easy to clean and sanitize.
  • • Double Black Imaging offers several soundproofing systems to reduce volume, increase privacy and productivity in the radiology reading room.
  • • The problem with a radiology workstation is that it holds many monitors and electronics, meaning many cables. A cable management system discreetly collects your cables and cords in a single, tidy place.
  • • To ensure your radiology workstation is fully functional, consider which of the following accessories you may need to incorporate: monitor mounts, cable management, CPU storage, USB charging station, lighting, height-adjustable control, and multi-level work surfaces.

 

Deciding on the correct radiology workstation can be a daunting prospect. Double Black Imaging offers an onsite radiology equipment survey to assess what workstation will be best for you. Our engineers treat each workstation as an individual solution to provide you with specific recommendations for each surveyed workspace. With years of experience, the team develops recommendations based on industry best practices and insider-knowledge of PACS, mammography/tomography, clinical, and surgical applications.

Contact our diagnostic imaging experts today to discuss your radiology department requirements.

Contact our diagnostic imaging experts