The Role of Environmental Services Departments
South Miami Hospital has undergone tremendous growth over the past decade while maintaining its sterling reputation for quality of care. With over 450 beds to manage along with a wide range of outpatient services, the team at South Miami Hospital has turned to technology to run more efficiently.
As Director of Environmental Services (EVS), Richard Ford manages a team of 110 employees through rapidly changing circumstances and all of the challenges that were brought on by the Covid-19 pandemic. Now, more than ever, it’s critical to maintain impeccably high standards when it comes to cleanliness in and around the facility. In addition to Covid-19, the EVS team is the first and most important line of defense against potentially fatal hospital-acquired-infections.
“Short and sweet – we prevent infection.”
Though it is a simple goal to define, its execution is increasingly complex. Maintaining a clean and safe environment in a hospital of this size requires significant levels of organization, coordination, and data.
The Limitations of a Manual Process
“Before implementing Walsh, supervisors were only able to perform 30 inspections a month.”
In order to prevent the spread of infection, South Miami’s EVS team frequently cleans and disinfects rooms and other areas within the hospital. Supervisors inspect those rooms once cleaned in order to ensure quality standards are upheld.
Before implementing Walsh QA Inspector, Richard’s supervisors were filling out forms manually to capture inspection results. This process severely impacted the amount of rooms a single supervisor was able to inspect. When they inspect more rooms, supervisors can identify cleaning issues and trends, and correct them while providing guidance to their Housekeepers. This helps Richard and his staff maintain quality standards, even as cleaning issues inevitably arise.
Improved Cleanliness Standards Through Automation
At South Miami Hospital, Walsh QA Inspector allows the EVS team to automate their inspections, quickly resolve any deficiencies found, and leverage data and insights to make significant improvements to their overall process. Using Walsh QA Inspector allows Richard and his team to aim for perfection, and hit it.
“Everything is automated and we get real-time information. Our supervisors now regularly perform 8 inspections per day each.”
Supervisors at South Miami Hospital have to meet with each of their direct reports frequently to provide feedback. The reports generated by Walsh QA Inspector give supervisors all of the context they need to evaluate employees. They use the Walsh reports to provide constructive feedback, targeted training, and help their teams improve.
Impact on Patient Satisfaction
The cleanliness of the rooms and facility is a critical criteria for patient satisfaction scores. Since patient satisfaction is so important to a hospital’s reputation, it is often factored into bonuses and compensation for hospital employees.
“We have a high objective for patient satisfaction scores.”
The EVS department plays a pivotal role in impacting patient perception. When supervisors are seen inspecting rooms and other areas around the hospital, patients and their families take notice. Their improved effectiveness is noticed and praised by staff as well.
The EVS team at South Miami Hospital has leveraged Walsh QA Inspector to significantly improve their effectiveness when it comes to keeping the hospital clean. This allows the hospital to continue to grow while maintaining the highest possible standards for patient safety and care.
“Walsh works with us to get us what we need – we can call them any time of the day and get immediate results.”