One trend in healthcare is a growth in educated patients: the access to information that patients have on a daily basis has increased exponentially from what was available just 10 to 15 years ago. They are simply more informed and even have the power to self-diagnose using the Internet.
Most notably, though, patients have a higher expectation of the type of care they are going to receive when they are in the hospital, and not just from nurses and doctors but also from support services such as housekeeping. They expect courtesy and communication from all whom they interact with, including room technicians and other frontline team members.
As such, the caliber of frontline team members has changed: they need to not only perform their day to day duties, but also be able to address needs of patients. They are expected to speak with the patient, determine his or her needs, and solve problems, all in a proactive manner.
Achieving this level of support can be done through selecting the right people to join the EVS team and then providing those individuals with constant training, communication, and education. This investment in time and education is paramount, as housekeepers often see patients on a more frequent basis than many clinical staff members and can be invaluable assets to reducing HAIs and improving patient experience. Both hospitals and support service providers can see a marked difference and a huge improvement in patient satisfaction by paying attention to this correlation.
Bobby Floyd is the Chief Operating Officer of HHS.