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Well, this is going to come as no surprise, but financial challenges are what concern hospital leaders the most these days.

Specifically: Medicaid/Medicare reimbursement, government funding cuts, bad debt, and decreasing inpatient volume.

The latest survey of hospital leaders by the American College of Healthcare Executives lists patient safety and quality as the #2 concern over healthcare reform and implementation.  Top five safety and quality concerns are engaging physicians in improving the culture of quality, redesigning care processes, redesigning work environment to reduce errors, pay for performance, and public reporting of data outcomes.

The design of the physical environment can help in both lowering operating costs and increasing quality and safety.

So, hospital CEOs, if you’re not looking at this as part of your process to improve profitability and address all five of the safety and quality concerns listed above, you are missing the boat.

And, healthcare architects, designers, contractors, product manufacturers, if you’re not tying your work to these concerns, you are missing the boat, too. Today’s healthcare clients want more than just a new building from you.  They want you to help them improve their outcomes.

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Sara Marberry, EDAC, is a healthcare design knowledge expert, thought catalyst, and strategic marketing and business development consultant. The author/editor of three books, Sara writes and speaks frequently about industry trends and evidence-based design. She can be reached at sara@saramarberry.com.

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