The Guidelines for Healthcare Design and Construction, for many years, has included tables listing minimum requirements for the number of electrical, medical gas, and nurse call devices at various locations throughout a healthcare facility. True to its mission to create “evidence-advised guidelines”, the Facility Guidelines Institute (FGI) has worked diligently, in recent years, to ensure our documents are based on an appropriate balance between evidence, benefit, and cost. However, the device tables have not been subject to such scrutiny– it is time for us to re-examine the appropriateness of the device requirements, on the basis of research.
As a member of the FGI Board, I often solicit Mazzetti participation to help further critical industry research. (This initiative included!)
WHY IS THIS RESEARCH NECESSARY?
Medical delivery continues to evolve, and we want to be certain that the requirements reflect current best clinical practice. We have some initial feedback that some of the devices types we are currently requiring may not be used in the real world, while good practice may mean that we need more of other kinds in other locations. Similarly, technology continues to evolve, and we want to be certain that the requirements reflect currently used technologies. We are also pondering whether the same room (e.g. Emergency Department Treatment Room) have the same needs in all kinds of facilities – critical access versus community versus Tertiary Academic Medical Center. Finally, as we (FGI) are making the shift towards developing more Beyond Fundamental resources, we want to capture and provide guidance on how some organizations are optimizing care through quantities and arrangements that are beyond those in our Fundamental Requirements documents.
ABOUT THE RESEARCH PROJECT, THUS FAR
To update our tables, the FGI has launched a research project to gather experiences from healthcare facilities around the country. Mazzetti’s in-house software development studio has created an on-line survey tool that we will use to gather and aggregate data from our research teams. In early December, a team of volunteers from Mazzetti worked with FGI leadership to beta test the survey tool and process in collaboration with St. Vincent Hospital, of the Ascension Health System. At this point, the FGI will be working with volunteers and volunteer facilities from around the country to implement the study in time for the spring meeting of the HGRC.
If you are interested in supporting the FGI in this important research, please contact Heather Livingston.