Asset tracking and temperature monitoring helps Jackson Health increase compliance and lower cost
Jackson Health System started tracking their mobile medical equipment assets and monitoring temperatures in their refrigerators and freezers in 2009 using Awarepoint’s RTLS solution. The results have been impressive, ranging from reduced equipment expenditures to significantly improved clinical workflows. These results were recently highlighted in an article in Executive Insight. The article details how this large health system achieved a significant ROI and cost savings across four distinct areas, including staff productivity, theft prevention, improved asset utilization and deferred capital expenditures. To learn more about how “RTLS has become an essential information technology system” for Jackson Health and helped them increase compliance, improve patient care and eliminate thousands of hours of wasted time searching for equipment, click here to read the full article.
Miami-based Jackson Health System is an academic and publicly-owned medical system with 22 separate buildings spread across a 4-million-square-foot campus. As with all health systems, they were interested in leveraging technology solutions to lower cost, increase efficiency and improve compliance efforts. The Awarepoint RTLS temperature monitoring solution helped the organization comply with county requirements and Joint Commission standards to monitor the temperature of drugs, food and vaccines. After implementation of the asset tracking system, Jackson Health saw a sizable return on investment after just one year. They also improved efficiency by dramatically reducing the average amount of time that providers spent locating equipment, previously 48 minutes. In a single month, Jackson Health saved 2,585 labor hours in the course of 3,447 equipment searches, enabling their staff to spend more time with patients.
In selecting an asset tracking and temperature monitoring solution, Jackson Health wished to avoid the use, or expansion of, their existing Wi-Fi network. With their large campus, they also wanted a system that could be installed quickly with no impact on their patient care units that depended on the existing network. As a result, they selected the Awarepoint solution, which uses a radio-frequency mesh network called ZigBee®. The network is highly secure, low-power, and does not interfere with any medical devices.
Jackson Health also experienced an improvement in workflow efficiency. As the team located and tagged 12,000 assets in their 22 buildings, they discovered that staff were hiding and hoarding equipment. Once staff realized the dashboard could immediately locate any tagged asset, hoarding tendencies waned. They found the improved efficiency and reduced labor and equipment cost quickly provided an ROI, and more than covered the cost of staff to run the program.
The Awarepoint temperature monitoring solution quickly paid dividends for Jackson Health when a refrigeration unit used to store medications malfunctioned over a weekend. The RTLS system sent an alert to maintenance teams, allowing them to quickly repair the unit. Without the system in place, the problem would not have been discovered until Monday and over $100,000 of pharmaceutical inventory would have been lost.
As Jackson Health looks to the future, they are considering patient and staff tracking solutions. Advanced software uses sophisticated analytics and workflow rules to measure location, movement and interaction among patients, staff and equipment, as well as the patient’s status in accordance with their ordered plan of care. Caregivers can anticipate and manage their workflow, and streamline movement of patients across the organization. These tools can also be used for infection control and response by providing visibility into which staff may have come into contact with an infected patient.
RTLS tracking solutions provide a wide range of benefits and show a strong ROI for hospitals. Jackson Health is one of a growing number of Awarepoint customers who are deploying innovative technology to increase efficiency and lower cost.