Geisinger Health System cares for over 3 million patients in Pennsylvania and New Jersey through an integrated delivery system model of healthcare, positively boosting its hometown economies by billions of dollars annually. Ranked one of the most innovative healthcare organizations in the country, Geisinger’s commitment to quality and innovation drives all patient care decisions and keeps the system in the forefront of America’s healthcare evolution.

How does a healthcare system with 9 hospitals, equating to over 3,000 acute care beds, manage the challenge of cleaning, changing, and replacing their privacy curtains at a time of heightened concern for infection control amid an ongoing pandemic? 

They made the radical decision to standardize system-wide, including new tracking that retrofits over existing with a couple screws, during the worst pandemic in recent history. It seems like an impossible task, but not only did they finish the changeout 6 months ahead of schedule, they were able to do it without any interruption to patient care. 


“You have to look at the overall total cost of ownership. When you are dealing with disposable, you may think ‘Well this is going to cost me an extra year’ - but you are not looking at the cost of what the other product was prior. Look at your total cost, look at the time that it's taking your environmental services team, take a look at the time to get them laundered, take a look at the replacement cost.”, says Joseph Mlinarich, associate vice president of quality, safety, and patient experience. Continuing with another fundamental thing to understand going into a project such as this, he says, “Really figure out all the rooms that truly have curtains and identify the spaces that don't need curtains. Especially for larger organizations, do you have rooms that are no longer in-use? On The Right Track has a tool to help aid in estimating the number of curtains. It’s really important to know.” 

To learn more detailed insights from operations, EVS, nursing, and executives, read the full case study comprising 9 on-the-ground interviews and a myriad of statistical data your health system can learn from and reference thanks to Geisinger leading the way. 

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