Sustainable Processes for Barrier Management in Today’s Healthcare Environment


Tip #27

Kelly Mason, Director of Healthcare Partnerships, Specified Technologies Inc.

Barrier Management in the healthcare setting provides a unique set of compliance challenges that create opportunities to help you meet your sustainability goals. There are a few best practices and tools that can assist you on your journey toward developing and maintaining a sustainable program.

Embracing Technology and Digital Tracking Tools

Transitioning from traditional methods like pen and paper to a more sustainable digital platform allows you to take advantage of the technology already available in your facility. Being able to track work as it is done in real-time and generate reports to show progress increases accountability and productivity throughout your facility.

Implementing a barrier management program provides your team with tools and standards specifically tailored to your organization. From something as simple as a library of approved products and systems to Standard Operating Procedures, installation sheets, and inspection documents, your program can be as simple or complex as needed.

Maintaining long-term compliance in the ever-changing facilities requires more than establishing a barrier management program. Constant communication with design and implementation teams working in the field or modeling software such as Autodesk Revit(R) is paramount. Leveraging weekly coordination meetings to ensure life safety issues are not only located in design but also addressed using means and methods defined in a facilities barrier management plan.

Post Occupancy, coordination between facilities management and the teams conducting work within a building remains paramount in protecting facility occupants. With the increase in complexity and volume of work across their buildings, many facilities have moved away from manual documentation in binders, and now utilize more modern tools developed in-house or made and supported by their vendor of choice.

When leveraged together, your barrier management program, alongside design and implementation tools, provides a complete circle of protection, ensuring materials and systems are utilized effectively in the best interests of the facility and its occupants throughout the lifecycle of the building.

Futureproofing your Barriers

Another key benefit of digitization is that it enhances patient satisfaction. With digital BMSs, you can give patients control over room temperature, lighting, and nurse calls. They can adjust their settings from a tablet or phone, without needing to rely on your staff. That frees up providers to focus on care while empowering your patients to feel more at home.

Benefit #3: Find Previously Invisible Operational Inefficiencies

Whether working in an existing facility or designing for the future, you should consider expanding IT and other services within your footprint. Some system choices are made due to low upfront costs, but the added cost of continued maintenance and the potential to become noncompliant makes them less desirable. Rated cable pathways, with their smaller footprint, lower maintenance design, and higher cable fill ratio, make them an excellent choice for future expansion.


Kelly Mason HeadshotKelly Mason, Director of Healthcare Partnerships, Specified Technologies Inc.