Poor maintenance, unrelenting, noisy equipment, lacking supplies, and subpar treatment outcomes represent some of the key drivers of higher healthcare facilities management costs. Let’s take a closer look at how healthcare facilities are turning to technology to enhance infection control through cleanliness, bring healthcare closer to consumers, and reduce a major source of discontent and stress, noise in hospitals, while having the net effect of enhancing the healing process.
Technology Will Augment Supervision of Facilities Management Professionals, Including Housekeepers
As explained by Arrow Lake News, extreme housekeeping violations in healthcare may have had a detrimental effect on the health of patients, staff, and visitors in one hospital receiving failing scores from overseeing agencies. Aside from the adverse impact on revenue gained from patients learning of the bad news, the facility also uncovered a need to invest more in housekeeping supplies and processes, including increasing wages and tracking activities, to bring facilities back into compliance. In addition, new equipment was needed, representing a need for emergency funding, as a new supervisor was brought on board.
This example reflects the need to hold the staff in health facilities accountable, and new technologies make this possible, without the costs associated with hiring another supervisor when existing supervisors are already on the payroll.
Micro-hospitals Will Become More Popular, So Facilities Managers Will Move Into Multisite Roles
A micro-hospital holds five to 15 beds and is comparable to the smaller, stand-alone emergency rooms, explains Becker’s Hospital Review. The prevalence of these smaller facilities is increasing, allowing smaller patient-to-staff ratios and better overall quality of care. However, multisite facilities come with the challenge of multisite facilities management. Since it would be impractical for a manager to oversee each facility on-site, the role of the Facilities Manager will evolve. Facilities Managers will become responsible for more locations, requiring web-based systems and technology, like a computerized maintenance management system (CMMS) to oversee multiple facilities.
Healthcare Facilities Will Also Move Into Retail Spaces to Reduce Waits
This results in a host of other infection control considerations, including separate ventilation systems, backup power supplies, and the need to secure patient information in both digital and print form. Furthermore, in-retail healthcare facilities will need to develop a means of transporting a patient who suddenly grows more ill from the retail site to an emergency department. However, in-retail healthcare facilities have the added benefits of lower operating costs than dedicated buildings, and these individuals can take advantage of consumer rewards programs to entice consumers to visit their establishment, reducing the burden on stretched emergency departments seeing patients who do not have a medical emergency.
Hospitals Will Redesign Facilities to Reduce Noise and Create a Healing-Conducive Environment
Addressing consumer complaints is among the top priorities for Facilities Managers, and noise makes up the top complaint of staff, visitors, and patients in hospitals, as shown in the Hospital Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems (HCAHPS) Survey, reports FacilitiesNet. However, more facilities are turning to engineers to redesign and retrofit facilities to reduce noise reverberation, and other measures are being taken to ensure the staff responds to the most common source of noise—patient monitoring and treatment equipment like IV pumps and ventilators, reports Science Daily.
Now, a beeping IV pump may not seem like a source of aggravation, but studies indicate a single pump may alarm up to 133 times per day. This is unacceptable, but imagine how connecting these devices to a central system to silence the alarm and notify the caregiver could eliminate the problem. Meanwhile, administrative noise control programs are being used to encourage staff to promote a healing-conducive, quiet environment for patients.
Integrated Processes, Systems, and Technologies Are Key to Reducing Healthcare Facilities Spend in 2018
Stress is the antagonist of any healthcare treatment, and unkempt facilities, long waits in crowded facilities, lacking access to healthcare, and noise are the harbingers of stress. Fortunately, facilities looking to reduce overall costs can leverage integrated systems and technologies to keep all facilities clean, expand to multisite portfolios, including in-retail establishments, to speed access to healthcare, and treat ailments in a quiet, healing-conducive facility. Find out how your organization can leverage a CMMS properly by contacting QSI Facilities today.