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Sustainability Initiatives for Facility Management


The effects of climate change and benefits of sustainability become clearer over time. With growing public expectations, government mandates and associated incentives, healthcare facility managers are prioritizing climate-resilient and environmentally sustainable operations.
Over the next few decades, facilities will integrate sustainability initiatives into facility operations to reach long-term targets. Achieving these goals will require time and continuous development. Creating an effective plan to reduce your organization’s carbon footprint can make these efforts easier to manage and more impactful.

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Laying the Foundation for a New Year


The new year marks a natural reset after the busy holiday season, which is why New Year’s resolutions are so popular on a personal level. For organizations, creating resolutions offers an opportunity to re-evaluate priorities and strategies. Of course, projects, successes and challenges will carry over from the previous year, but the beginning of a new year gives us all a chance to set new goals and start the year off strong.

As we head into the new year, we’re focusing on three ways you can start your healthcare facility out on the right foot for 2023.

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After the Storm: Hurricane Recovery


We may be at the tail end of hurricane season (June–November), but it’s necessary to stay vigilant. In the past few months alone, we have seen the tragic effects of Hurricanes Fiona, Ian and Nicole. According to the National Centers for Environmental Information’s U.S. Billion-Dollar Weather & Climate Disasters 1980-2022 Analysis, two tropical cyclone events (Fiona and Ian) have caused losses exceeding $1 billion as of Oct. 11, 2022. Hurricane Ian caused $1.8 billion in damages to Florida’s agriculture alone. The full amount of the impact is still being calculated.

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Three Tactics for Increasing Handwashing Compliance in Healthcare Facilities


handwashing.jpgProper handwashing is one of the most basic and effective elements of infectious disease protocol and protecting vulnerable patients. While it’s easy to assume your associates are taking precautions and washing their hands, handwashing compliance levels often falter over time, according to a University of Chicago Medical Center study.

Healthcare workers on average are only washing their hands half as many times as they should be per shift, according to the CDC, which recommends washing hands before and after each patient encounter to prevent spreading germs to other patients and staff members, even when gloves are being worn. Frequent and facility-wide use of alcohol-based hand sanitizer, in addition to washing with soap and water, can have a significant impact on preventing healthcare-associated infections.

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How to Handle a Twindemic


As flu season begins to impact patients and facilities nationwide, public health experts are warning hospitals to prepare for a “twindemic” – or even “tripledemic” – during which they might be treating a large influx of COVID-19 and flu or RSV patients simultaneously this winter.
During the first two years of the COVID-19 pandemic, flu season was mild from heightened precautions, such as working from home, decrease in social gatherings, and use of masks and hand sanitizer. However, a return to open offices and social gatherings and a decrease in mask use could allow another severe outbreak to occur. Furthermore, Australia's flu season, which occurs before our flu season in the northern hemisphere, saw an early arrival of flu and the highest number of flu cases in the past five years. This is a good reminder that healthcare facilities should put plans into place to ensure they are ready to face the challenges this flu season may present.

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Ensuring a Safe and Compliant Healing Environment


For healthcare facilities, rules and regulations act as a foundational shield against preventable harm within the physical environment. Without a comprehensive compliance strategy, facilities may face legal and financial repercussions, in addition to putting patients, staff and visitors at risk.
Implementing strong compliance strategies can even out what may otherwise be a race to readiness months prior to your triennial survey. By setting your compliance course in a manner that provides an “always-ready” steadiness, you can avoid the mental stress and be confident of safety and success during any unscheduled survey.

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Building the Foundation for Effective Acute Care


Acute care facilities serve a variety of patients each day, so healthcare teams must be prepared to meet a wide range of needs.
For remodels and new construction, design elements create a supportive foundation for high-quality patient care. The goal is to enhance comfort in an inherently stressful space through intentional design choices.

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Three questions to ask while designing a behavioral health facility


Detail-oriented facility planning and design creates the foundation for effective healthcare treatment. For facilities that aim to treat conditions related to mental health or substance abuse, there are specific considerations designers must take into account to create the right environment.
Designing a behavioral health facility goes beyond following compliance standards. In order to create a safe and supportive healing environment, your team has to make intentional decisions. Asking the right questions along the way is an important part of ensuring the safety, privacy and comfort of your clients.

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Designing pediatric hospitals with children’s needs in mind


Planning a children’s hospital requires deliberate decisions at every turn. Each design element is an opportunity to make the children in treatment and their support teams feel safer and more comfortable within the space.

Creating a better environment for patients, and particularly pediatric patients, can have a strong impact on treatment outcomes. In fact, for the first time in history, there are more patients with congenital illness over the age of 18 than under, which is indicative of extraordinary advances in pediatric medicine and facilities. Continuing to support the health of infants, children and adolescents means taking their needs into consideration while designing healthcare facilities for them.

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Integrating Values into Everyday Work


Too often, core values of an organization only exist on paper. A true values-based environment helps connect associates and establishes a purpose behind the work they do.  

Core values should be apparent in all aspects of your healthcare organization, from daily interactions to business strategies. Moral standards set the framework for everything your organization does and align the team with the same goals and direction. While every workplace is guided by different values, common practices can help embed your organization’s values in day-to-day work. 

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Implementing Sustainable Infectious Disease Protocols


More than two years into dealing with a pandemic, healthcare workers are facing a new public health concern. The World Health Organization declared monkeypox a global health emergency in July, and just as they have been with COVID-19, healthcare facilities are at the frontlines. 

While the hospitalization and fatality rates for monkeypox are much lower than those of COVID-19, facilities are focusing on implementing evaluation, testing and vaccine distribution procedures to help keep their communities safe. The outbreak reminds us once again that new waves and diseases are rarely predictable, and healthcare facilities should be prepared with sufficient and sustainable protocols and emergency preparedness plans. 

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Prioritizing mental health and self-care while caring for others


When your job is to care for others, you can too easily forget to care for yourself. Healthcare workers often overlook their own mental health needs because they are more focused on keeping patients safe and giving the best care possible. But prioritizing your and your team’s mental health is essential, especially during the ongoing pandemic. By being present and promoting a supportive environment, leaders can help their teams cope with stress in healthy ways.

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Medxcel honored at PRSA Hoosier Chapter’s 2022 Pinnacle Awards


Connections are the backbone of healthcare. During a difficult year in the healthcare industry, Medxcel remained dedicated to providing support and encouraging connections to improve the overall healthcare environment. We’re honored to be recognized for our programs that strengthened employee relations and connected healthcare leaders and providers in the past year.

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Addressing Vulnerabilities and Preparing for Crises


The safety of patients, guests and staff is the top priority in hospitals. Healthcare facility managers must always focus efforts on emergency preparedness to ensure readiness in the face of extreme weather events, violence and other crises. An increase in mass shootings in hospitals and other community spaces across the country makes preparation even more imperative. 

In three recent articles, Healthcare Facilities Today discussed how and why facilities plan to handle emergencies. With insights from Scott Cormier, Medxcel’s Vice President of Emergency Management, Environment of Care and Safety, Healthcare Facilities Today overviewed responses to crises and offered guidance on physically and financially preparing hospitals for emergencies. 

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Responding to Community Needs


Hospitals have always played an essential role in supporting and caring for our communities. They often act as the place where life begins and ends and provide a healing environment for challenges in between. Especially in smaller communities, hospitals are often some of the largest employers and are geographically centered. Hospitals can also serve a greater purpose by supporting community-wide health initiatives.

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When Best Practices Don’t Apply


The onset of the COVID-19 pandemic is a moment in history when the way we lived, worked and played seemingly changed in an instant. For many organizations, like Medxcel, this included a major overhaul in how we operated to not only continue delivering a high level of care, but also protect patients and staff at a time when we didn’t know much about the virus or how it spread.

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The Science Behind Compassion in Patient Care


Compassion is a critical part of patient care, and its benefits extend far beyond the patient. Eric Waller is Medxcel’s Vice President of Field Support Services and has seen compassion at work firsthand throughout his career.

It’s not just anecdotal evidence.

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5 Key Components of Effective Emergency Management Planning


When dealing with an emergency situation, the greatest strength in an organization is a well-developed plan. And, if there’s any period of time that taught us the importance of emergency management plans, it’s been the COVID-19 pandemic. Every community relies on healthcare to serve its people. In times of crisis, this is even more apparent as patient care becomes critical to the health of the community.

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Putting the “Hospital” in “Hospitality”


Picture the last time you stayed at a nice hotel or ate dinner at a fancy restaurant. Was there soft but ample lighting? Cozy seating arrangements? Did you see or use a digital kiosk or tablet provided by hospitality staff? The hospitality industry exists to ensure customers have an enjoyable experience away from home. As noted by hospitality tech provider Cvent, “Making sure each individual guest is taken care of is paramount.”

This is true for hospitals, too. The patient experience is paramount to deliver quality care. It starts with employees and extends to patients’ families and visitors, and anyone who enters a healthcare facility.

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Overcoming Supply Chain Obstacles


Ensuring healthcare facilities secure necessary tools is a complex process. Additional challenges compounded quickly at the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, which have since shifted the way organizations approach healthcare supply chain strategies. From identifying offshore versus onshore manufacturers and engaging in dual-sourcing to closely observing political changes and practicing foresight, healthcare facilities are able to set in motion new strategies that ensure their employees have the equipment they need.

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