Facilities management is an essential job that often flies under the radar when things are going smoothly. In a hospital, facilities managers are critically important, as they cater not only to the comfort of patients but to their health, safety, and security as well. Here, you’ll see why hospital facilities managers are so crucial.
Improving Patient Comfort
Health facilities management teams create a comfortable setting that promotes confidence and assurance among patients. A clean environment is important anywhere, but cleanliness takes on a new level of importance in a hospital or other healthcare setting where poor sanitation can lead to infection or the spread of disease. Healthcare facilities managers oversee the cleaning of rooms and inspect the work to make sure the hospital is pristine.
Facilities management also handles matters of comfort and aesthetics, such as purchasing accommodating chairs for the waiting room and selecting soothing paint colors throughout the hospital. These professionals handle the installation and maintenance of everything from lighting to water fountains. The right ambiance eases patients and visitors who are often under stress or in pain.
Providing Proper Nourishment
Facilities management teams handle the sourcing, preparation, and delivery of meals to patients and visitors. They’re responsible for selecting certain meal options, contracting with high-quality suppliers, and addressing meal presentation. They have the challenging task of balancing affordability with desirability. Providing tasty, nutritious food can help end the stigma about bad hospital fare and encourage patients to choose that hospital in the future, both for themselves and their loved ones.
Cutting Down Wait Times
In a well-managed facility, patients may enjoy shorter wait times, which boosts both patient satisfaction and hospital efficiency. To keep wait times down, it’s crucial that all equipment receives timely maintenance and repairs. Hospital facilities managers carefully evaluate the usage of each piece of equipment and compare this with the manufacturer’s base projections to determine whether maintenance should happen more or less often. These managers also contract with the appropriate repair professionals to ensure a prompt fix when something goes wrong, whether it’s a burst pipe, a faulty air filter, or malfunctioning medical equipment.
Facilities managers can also streamline the patient experience by posting clear signage throughout the facility to point patients in the proper direction for testing, appointments, and emergency services. Well-equipped waiting areas with amenities like snack machines and sleek televisions can make even a longer wait seem like a manageable amount of time.
Keeping Costs Low
There are many complex costs associated with running a medical facility, and facilities management for hospitals can help reduce those costs. Having a skilled professional overseeing the various aspects of managing the facility will help keep costs within budget. The facilities manager handles recurring purchases like cleaning supplies and foodstuffs, as well as periodic expenses associated with maintenance and repairs. The skilled manager takes on the task of contracting with construction personnel for larger projects like renovations or the building of a new hospital wing.
If these numerous building management tasks are not managed by a single individual, it’s easy for them to get out of control. Keeping them within a single budget makes it possible to make adjustments to keep the hospital within its means.
The facilities management team can also help the hospital avoid significant expenses associated with lawsuits. If the building lacks proper handrails, wheelchair ramps, safety lighting, or other features, it’s very possible for a patient to get injured, leaving the hospital with a nightmare in legal fees and liabilities. Proper facilities management will help prevent these kinds of situations.
Keeping Patients Safe
Facilities managers handle safety and security in all its forms. They implement check-in procedures for individuals coming into the building to make sure only the appropriate people are admitted to sensitive environments. These managers handle surveillance as well, installing and maintaining cameras in key areas to provide both security and accountability in the hospital setting.
Cybersecurity falls under the purview of the facilities manager in many hospitals as well. Facilities management personnel work closely with the IT department to make sure that all systems are secure and patient information is never compromised. From locking up controlled or regulated medications to managing proper hazardous waste disposal, facilities management professionals go to great lengths to minimize the potential dangers in a hospital setting.
With a skilled facilities management team present, hospitals can lower costs, increase productivity, and boost patient satisfaction. This all leads to a better experience for employees, visitors, and patients alike. Filling this role well is key to creating an outstanding and competitive hospital environment.