Nail Your Next Hospital Tender: 4 Common Pitfalls of Tendering Nurse Call Systems

Nurse call systems are essential in hospitals and acute care facilities, allowing nurses to manage their patients and staff workflow to ensure less crowded waiting rooms, more productivity, fewer errors, and happier patients. However, if not integrated properly, these systems can end up costing hundreds of thousands in unexpected fees to complete the project and maintain it over the long term. In this eBook, we discuss the common pitfalls of tendering nurse call systems and how to avoid them.

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When it comes to resident and patient care, it is important to ensure that nurses and staff have the right tools to respond to calls and requests promptly

Being able to effectively respond to an emergency call can mean the difference between life and death. This means that in the design and tender process of modern hospital solutions, no detail can be overlooked. The engineering firm selected by the healthcare authority to build out a Nurse Call System becomes responsible for not only the structure, civil engineering and mechanical systems but also critical electrical and life-saving systems.

However, often the engineers tendering healthcare systems lack the expertise to optimize the unique details of healthcare systems. For example, if engineers do not specify the system in a way that can integrate and scale with other systems, in two years when the hospital adopts a new advance in medical technology, they may miss the mark if future-ready foundational elements were not considered in the original design.

In Canada, the healthcare landscape is changing dramatically

It will require platforms that integrate with IoT devices, SIP phones, RTLS, HL7/ADT, pagers, scrolling marquees, medical beds, medical equipment, alarms, and more. And this integration is most often tested when a patient or their family uses a Nurse Call System to ask for help.

To avoid these pitfalls, it is important to ensure the conjunction of knowledge of information and communication systems, offering organizations and leadership the information needed to drive successful implementations of new technologies and approaches to care delivery.

One of the common pitfalls of tendering nurse call systems is that the solution doesn’t provide a foundation for tomorrow. Although experts in civil engineering, electrical and mechanical systems, we cannot expect the engineers tendering healthcare systems to also be experts in healthcare informatics; a field of science that aims at developing methods and technologies for the acquisition, processing, and study of patient data. Data that comes from many different sources and modalities – like electronic health records, diagnostic test results, medical scans.

Another pitfall is that clinical information systems and clinical technologies such as workload measurement systems, scheduling and monitoring systems are ubiquitous in healthcare and while they have changed the delivery of healthcare, they have also fallen short of clinician expectations. Increased workloads, documentation burden, and inefficient workflows have resulted from information systems designed without the benefit of integration and scalability built in at the start.

If done correctly, integrated and scalable systems play a significant role in addressing organizational and system-level workplace contributors to burnout for nurses and negative patient outcomes related to documentation and digital health.

Tendering nurse call systems is a critical process that requires expertise in both engineering and healthcare informatics

By avoiding the common pitfalls discussed in this eBook, engineers can ensure that the nurse call system is integrated and scalable, providing a foundation for future advances in medical technology and delivering better care to patients.