Hospital Facilities Managers: Seeing Through Fresh Eyes
It happens to almost all of us: We have a task awaiting our attention – it’s sitting there right in front of us – but we’re busy with other urgent duties and before long that task becomes invisible. It gets shoved into a corner. It becomes part of the furniture, and we cease to see it. That is, until someone says, “Hey, isn’t that the (annual report, missing box of widgets, boss’s birthday decorations, etc.) under your desk?”
In hospitals, the person who notices such storage mishaps is often a compliance surveyor, and the misplaced items aren’t birthday decorations. They’re beds in hallways, or supplies stacked too close to ceiling sprinklers, or portable equipment stashed in front of fire exits. Like the co-worker who notices the box under your desk, the compliance surveyor is viewing the hospital with “fresh eyes.”
A proactive effort to see your hospital through the eyes of a surveyor will pay off in tangible ways. Do your own compliance survey and you will find yourself seeing things differently, identifying deficiencies before they become a source of fines or sanctions.
At the same time, team up with experts to help you identify problem areas and find solutions. If hospital beds are cluttering hallways because there’s nowhere to store them, a storage consultant can recommend space-saving vertical bed lifts. Stockpiles of medical supplies can be moved onto racks where they can be inventoried, managed, and kept away from the ceiling. Equipment can be securely stored in high-density shelving instead of a temporary corner or closet.
Other outside experts can assist in uncovering issues with hazardous waste management, infection control, and fire safety. It requires some imagination to see your hospital through the eyes of others, but your own proactive compliance survey will save costly emergency fixes as well as potential de-certification. As Wayne Dyer says, “Change the way you look at things, and the things you look at will change.” You’ll see with fresh eyes, and you’ll make positive changes.
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