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5 Common Misconceptions About Healthcare Facility Planning

By CME on Apr 17, 2014 8:18:00 AM

ID-100248964While CME is not in the business of space, equipment or facility planning, we work closely with, and certainly appreciate the value that equipment planners bring to new construction, expansion, or remodeling of medical facilities.

Over the years, we’ve heard a number of misconceptions about healthcare facility planning.  Here are five to keep in mind when you’re planning your project:

Facility Planning Managers are a Waste of Money

Having an experienced planning manager will move the project along in a timely manner.  Working at an efficient speed will bring the new changes up to snuff and allow the facility to become a major revenue generator quickly.  As with any business, the longer you delay on high demand services, the more patients you stand to lose to competing healthcare facilities.  These types of projects require considerations from all standpoints, from patient flow to interior design details.  A Facility Planning Manager will handle all aspects of updates allowing you to fast track the project toward a more rapid completion.

Replacing Older Equipment or Technology Is Not Necessary

There is a continuing need for healthcare facilities, equipment and technology to offer optimum performance.  When undergoing changes to an existing facility, it is a big mistake to simply build around existing equipment and software.  From pharmacies to dialysis suites, you want to be certain you have the latest technology that will add to the end user experience, improve efficiencies and remain compatible with the rest of the industry.

No Need to Review Facility Circulation Systems

With increasing demand for infection prevention protocols and the need to facilitate as many patients as possible, as efficiently as possible, it is important to consider your facility circulation system.  Guiding who must be seen, where they must be seen, and logical services that will work in hand with either treatment or diagnosis, must all be considered together with how patients will find their way in your system.  That means you must consider the following:

  • Signage and directions for patients, visitors and staff

  • Patient control for infection prevention providing separate areas for varying degrees of infection risk

  • Short travel distances whenever possible

  • Patient and staff traffic flow

  • Inpatient versus outpatient requirements

You must document and layout space usage, new facility design plan, facility equipment, patient traffic and activity volume to address facility circulation needs.

Support Services Don't Need To Be Included In The Planning

Healthcare facility logistics must include all aspects of the hospital, including support services.  Support services will include everything from private space for staff, to the common administrative offices.  Facilities for preparing food for patients, maintenance, including storage of cleaning products and equipment, and even waste management must all be considered in the facility circulation system.  How far do on call doctors have to travel from their rest areas to the emergency room?  How far is the kitchen to the area where inpatients are accommodated?  Is there need for staff private areas in each department? All of these points must be factored in to your healthcare facility logistics.

Save Money on Public Spaces

This is by far one of the most damaging misconceptions.  The surroundings and appearance of a hospital play a key role in patient comfort, trust and creating a feeling conducive to a place of healing.  Your plans must include open spaces, logical entries in relation to parking and easy to find reception and information desks.

Healthcare facility logistics require expert input and management.  CME is a medical distributor focusing on equipment, and the associated logistics, for outfitting new medical facilities, expansions and remodels.  At CME, we are equipment delivery specialists who work closely with facility planners and have been providing assistance to healthcare facilities for over 30 years.

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Topics: Equipment Delivery, healthcare facility planning

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