Many advances in patient care have come about through the introduction of innovative and sophisticated medical equipment. With that advance is the need for additional or unique space to accommodate this equipment. For this reason, it's crucial that these medical equipment needs are properly considered when planning a new medical facility, in order to provide adequate space.
As this Healthcare Design article indicates, new healthcare facilities need to accommodate the latest technology, and a greater proportion of the overall building space has to be allocated to accommodate these technologies. The proliferation of equipment means treatment rooms often need to be larger or configured differently so they have enough space for equipment, facilitate efficient flow and make sure staff and patients are comfortable.
There's also the need to anticipate future developments and provide space for expansion. Besides the need to provide space for new equipment, other essential infrastructure requirements include the provision of utility and equipment rooms and other services.
EMR and IT
The increased use of electronic medical record (EMR) systems reduces paperwork and ensures patient records are complete and up-to-date. However, their introduction puts greater stress on IT systems, which have to be secure, always available and robust. Many medical imaging systems are computer controlled and naturally become part of the IT network. System response time must be good and capable of handling high volumes of data, and because of the reliance on electronic record keeping, IT downtime or data loss cannot be tolerated.
Using Equipment Planning Specialists
The complexity of modern healthcare means the traditional way of designing and constructing a facility by an architectural team without the early involvement of equipment planners is no longer viable. Instead, an integrated project team approach is needed; and input from each specialist function should be taken into consideration and incorporated into the building layout and design.
The role of the medical equipment planner might also include the specification and selection of medical equipment and the coordination of equipment installation by multiple equipment vendors. The equipment planner's expert knowledge is invaluable in the selection of the right combination of equipment to meet the overall objectives of the client.
Providing the Best Care for the Patient
The key focus of all medical caregivers must always be to provide the best possible care for their patients. Because modern medical technology improves the physicians' ability to correctly diagnose and treat illnesses, healthcare facilities need to keep abreast of these developments and ensure they offer patients modern treatment options.
Bringing equipment planners on board at the beginning of a construction project means that medical equipment requirements are easily incorporated into the building design. This avoids the inevitable alterations that may be needed when equipment planning is treated as a separate function.
CME, formerly Claflin Medical Equipment, Hospital Associates & RSI, with more than thirty years of experience in procuring and delivering equipment to healthcare facilities, is able to work with your equipment planner to provide a complete healthcare equipment planning service. Contact us here or call us at 800-338-2372.