Healthcare Facility Managers Prioritize IAQ, Life Safety Systems

A large proportion (94%) of surveyed healthcare facility managers say remote management is essential for operational efficiency, in accordance with a fresh report from Honeywell. Only 1 in four (25%) surveyed now have such a system set up, but 26% intend to spend money on this technology on the next 12 to 1 . 5 years.

The report, “Rethinking Healthcare Facilities as Integrated Entities,” the fourth in Honeywell’s 2021 Building Trends series, presents the challenges, priorities, and assessments of surveyed facility managers over the healthcare sector in the U.S., China, Germany, and Saudi Arabia.

(Credit: Getty Images/Povozniuk)

Occupant safety and wellbeing also ranked saturated in priority, with an increase of than 90% of surveyed facility managers saying improved indoor quality of air (IAQ) and life safety systems are essential to attracting and retaining facility occupants. Respondents will probably invest in a minumum of one of the following on the next 12 to 1 . 5 years: IAQ solutions (28%), fire detection software (28%), or aspirating smoke detection (25%).    

Additionally, operational challenges amplified by COVID-19 has raised knowing of predictive maintenance as an integral enabler of efficiency, with 61% of respondents more ready to spend money on it today than in pre-pandemic times. Just 30% of these surveyed currently have this type of system set up, but 30% will probably spend money on this technology in the near term and 27% will probably procure real-time tracking of individuals and assets to greatly help enhance operational efficiency. The three improvements respondents believe would supply the greatest benefit to occupants are predictive maintenance (30%), reduced downtime (29%), and better indoor quality of air (28%).

Budgetary concerns also surfaced through the entire survey findings. Three in four respondents have a problem with securing the money to handle their operational needs – a continuing challenge for most healthcare organizations further frustrated by COVID-19’s preemption of elective surgeries along with other profitable treatments. Nearly as much (74%) express concerns about maintaining growing capacity needs. Despite these challenges, 31% of surveyed facility managers consider improving patient satisfaction among their top near-term priorities, while 29% prioritize improving energy efficiency.

Given that they’ve handled the operational challenges of COVID-19 for more than a year, respondents recognize that a good building is foundational to increasing operational throughput and efficiencies. Nearly 64% of these are now more prone to spend money on smart building technologies than in pre-pandemic times. For which aspects of a good building they consider most significant, many (56%) say improving staff productivity and building operations and 52% mention the capability to manage all building systems by way of a single platform with unified data and insights.

“Connected healthcare facilities have already been proven to improve patient care, clinical outcomes and operational efficiency,” said Keith Fisher, vice president, global services, Honeywell Building Technologies. “Increasing operational insight might help them optimize the usage of their assets in order to avoid bottlenecks, cut waiting times and upgrade the entire patient experience. Several goals may be accomplished by upgrading a preexisting building management system with no need to rip and replace. That is important as facilities are increasingly likely to improve day-to-day outcomes and enhance efficiencies with little if any upsurge in budgets.”

A connected healthcare facility can centrally monitor, align, and manage multiple processes to optimize workflows and improve operational throughput otherwise. Such a facility may also use its integrated technology platform to create control and revenues or avoid costs. Integrating multiple technology domains gives facilities the various tools they have to improve patient experience and staff satisfaction with innovations such as for example self-service patient portals and mobile apps for clinical staff.

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