It should come as no surprise that nine out of the 10 most frequently cited standards during 2014 TJC surveys were directly applicable to the management of the physical environment. (One of the nine is under Infection Control, but it’s the IC standard that deals with the management of disinfection, supplies, and equipment). With the ongoing focus on Infection Control as a proactive risk management strategy for hospitals, it is likely that survey of the physical environment will continue to be a hot-button topic for the foreseeable future and so must be considered the most significant regulatory vulnerability for any healthcare organization.
In the work that The Greeley Company has done with clients who’d experienced less than optimal results during their surveys and then turned to Greeley for assistance, I’ve noted that an estimated 85-90% of the findings involved “typical” deficiencies—those that resulted from conditions and practices that, if they had been identified ahead of time, could have been addressed, had appropriate strategies implemented, etc. prior to their surveys. The fact of the matter is that the management of the physical environment is not merely the task of a few committee members, but rather the responsibility of each member of the organization.
The work of The Greeley Company focuses on the development of compliance strategies that are, at the very core, practical and sustainable. Safety is a daily practice – not once every three years!
Greeley helps clients to work toward understanding the requirements, and, in so doing, establish an ongoing, consistent process of preparing for their surveys, rather than experiencing a roller coaster ride of ramping up for survey every three years (while the unannounced survey process is supposed to remove this, the survey ramp-up is still a commonly operationalized strategy).
Click here to read a case study about a Midwest hospital’s experience in working with The Greeley Company to support their physical environment survey readiness activities.