Healthcare delivery is changing and becoming increasingly distributed and diverse. With more locations to maintain, facilities management has become an essential function for any retail healthcare, urgent care, ambulatory care, dental, physical therapy or other provider of medical services.
When maintaining numerous centers and facilities, it’s essential to know what’s occurring in them, what problems exist and how they’re being remedied, the costs involved, who is performing work on-site and the potential risks you’re facing.
Any healthcare professional responsible for running facilities, maintaining operations, and ensuring superior quality of care and patient experience needs to focus on these areas.
Having transparency and visibility into your operations and centers is a crucial first step. Today, you simply can’t deliver a quality level of care without:
- Knowing what’s happening across your locations,
- Having actionable data and business intelligence,
- Objectively managing your third-party service providers and/or
- Leveraging modern tools to automate the necessary repair & maintenance services
Key Retail Healthcare Trends & How to Keep Up with FM
Let’s look at a few of the most impactful trends in retail healthcare and how FMs can successfully respond:
1. Greater Impact of Facility Appearance
How your retail healthcare locations are maintained has a direct impact on the perception of the quality of care you deliver. This is vital; the amount of competition has skyrocketed in recent years, meaning that patients have many more choices when it comes to where they give their business.
Think: what do you want the appearance of your retail healthcare center say about you? A clean, well-maintained clinic shows you care, giving patients the impression that you will show the same level of commitment to them. A neglected site, however, creates a poor brand image for not just the individual site, but all other locations associated with that brand name as well.
FMs can prioritize clinic appearance and cleanliness by implementing automated work order processes that take care of repair and maintenance scheduling for them. Work order automation removes the potential for human error and ensures facilities are regularly serviced.
2. Higher Workplace Safety Risks
Healthcare facilities report a rate of work-related illnesses and injuries double those of other industries. In response, inspectors have been asked to pay closer attention to MSDs and STFs during healthcare site inspections. The goal is, of course, to keep everyone safer in healthcare settings, but it can put a strain on FMs.
Service automation can help lift this burden by transforming asset tracking processes. This helps monitor things that pose potential workplace dangers— floor mats and runners, poor lighting, loose cords and wires— and alerts FMs if they need to attend to them.
3. Push for Accreditation
Urgent care centers and other ambulatory care sites are now pushing for accreditation through entities like the Urgent Care Association of America (UCAOA) and The Joint Commission. Why? First, accreditation can be a key distinguishing factor for patients, payers, and referring providers, so being an accredited can help you win significantly more business. Second, some payers require accreditation.
In order to earn accreditations, however, retail healthcare facilities need to meet these organizations’ standards for care environments. Facilities managers can help earn accreditation by using service automation to keep retail healthcare clinics well maintained, creating a safe environment for patients, visitors and employees.
With increasing competitive pressures, corporate standards, government regulations and patient demand, there’s a lot to know. The tools and technologies available and best practices followed are vastly different from what was in play only a few years ago. Staying on top of these trends is important to ensure a successful and viable operation.
One way to keep abreast of what you need to know is in our ebook focused on healthcare facilities management topics like:
- How and Why Smart Healthcare Operators Ensure Properly Maintained Healthcare Environments
- If Disney Ran Your Urgent Care Center
- What Your Urgent Care Center Says About the Care Your Provide
- What Urgent Care Operators Need to Know to Stay in Business
- 3 Major Challenges Retail Healthcare Clinics and Urgent Care Centers Face