August 11, 2010
In last week’s blog post, I recommended decentralizing supplies and equipment to the patient room based on my job shadow of a nurse. This week, the focus moves to cleaning equipment inside the patient room.
Unfortunately, patients acquire about 1.7 million infections in U.S. hospitals every year. As a result, there is an increasing need to apply strategies for infection prevention.
One strategy, for example, stems from the fact that sicker patients require more equipment. At the very least, an IV pole and pump should be standard equipment in every patient room—and cleaned there, too.
The traditional equipment cleaning process includes pushing it throughout the hospital to another department for cleaning. This means that a potentially contaminated item could be moving throughout the hospital. This isn’t a good idea.
Hospital staff already clean the patient’s bed, overbed table, bedside stand, and family furniture in the patient room. Adding equipment to the list would remove several steps from the equipment cleaning process. It also would improve operational savings and infection prevention rates.
Keeping and cleaning equipment in the patient room would significantly reduce staff travel distances, too, and eliminate hunting and gathering. And, it would allow nurses more time for their primary passion–taking care of their patients.
August 9, 2010
Some top-flight universities, including the University of Notre Dame, have long recognized the latent market potential in the labor of their researchers. They now are proactively creating an environment where that potential can blossom.
Innovation Park at Notre Dame is one place where that alchemy happens. Innovation Park is a businesslike three-story building across the street from university’s campus and within sight of its golden dome. It contains labs, offices, and all the support services to transform a bright idea into a viable business. The building is intended to be bright and open, mobile and versatile.
The Greenhouse, for example, is the first-floor space where people meet, ideas collide, and the most tender businesses take root. “Virtually everything is on wheels,” says Dave Brenner, CEO of Innovation Park.
Taking flexibility to the max, the Greenhouse not only is outfitted with Herman Miller’s most mobile furniture, it also is equipped with a “programmable infrastructure,” which gives the user ultimate control over lights, outlets, data and power, and even the window shades, from a personal computer or a two-button wand. The result is a space with enormous flexibility and the capability to reduce energy costs.
Herman Miller Journal
August 6, 2010
Celebrate the abundance of summertime produce with a recipe from our Marigold Lodge for Cantaloupe and Tomato Soup.
Watch for another recipe from Marigold Lodge next week!
Cantaloupe and Tomato Soup
Preparation time: 20 minutes.
4 small ripe cantaloupes
6 ounces orange juice concentrate
4 large tomatoes, peeled and cored
½ teaspoon cinnamon
1 cup whipping cream
½ cup Grand Marnier
Mint sprigs to garnish
Peel cantaloupes and remove the seeds.
Cut into 1-inch chunks.
Puree cantaloupe and tomatoes in a blender or processor until smooth.
Stir in remaining ingredients, except mint, and mix well.
Serve in chilled stemmed glasses or glass bowls.
Garnish with mint sprigs.
Click here for more recipes from Marigold Lodge.
August 4, 2010
My recent job shadow of a med/surg nurse proved enlightening. It reinforced my belief that there should be a space available either directly inside or outside of every patient room to store supplies and equipment. Decentralizing important items to these areas would enable nurses to work more efficiently. And it would cut their travel time to supply areas and equipment rooms.
Storing supplies in or near patient rooms will require those spaces to be maintained, but this responsibility should not be shouldered by nurses. Their job is to care for patients, not to hunt and gather supplies.
There also should be a place in every patient room to store select pieces of equipment, such as IV poles and pumps. Patients now are sicker and the equipment storage needs for them has increased. The equipment might vary depending on the specialty of the unit, but this step would make it immediately accessible for use.
We architects already allocate and plan space for supplies and equipment in labor delivery recovery/postpartum rooms. If we use this same approach and reallocate the square footage that typically would go into an equipment room, that space could be used to provide storage in or near the patient room. This would eliminate wasted motion, give nurses what they need–where and when they need it–and allow them to focus on giving care.
August 2, 2010
You may want to. He’s Steve Kutches, president of Aero Foil International. It’s a small business that designs and builds components for the aerospace industry. And small businesses like his are good for all of us.
How so? Sheer numbers, for one. In 2006, the latest year for which data is available, there were about 7.6 million businesses in the U.S., and 81 percent were small businesses, with 100 employees or fewer.
Or, consider job creation. Firms with fewer than 500 employees accounted for 64 percent (or 14.5 million) of the 22.5 million net new jobs (gains minus losses) between 1993 and the third quarter of 2008. In every recession over the last three decades, businesses with fewer than 100 employees led the recovery.
This time around, small businesses face even bigger challenges. But some things remain the same. Their work moves fast. They need to stay focused on their customers. They must watch their finances. And when it comes to furnishing their offices, they need to buy it, love it, and get on with their work.
The Herman Miller S3 program is designed to do just that. It moves fast. It makes the process easy and affordable. And, with our local dealer presence, it gives small business owners as much guidance as they need. Which, when you think of it, is much better than a hug.