In last month’s column, I touched on the importance of collaborative relationships between health care facilities managers and other health care department members, such as environmental services (EVS) staff, to succeed in our common mission of delivering exceptional patient care.

Effective interdepartmental collaboration requires welcoming the right people to the table, strong and frequent communication, and sharing best practices — but it also cannot thrive without dedicating time and effort to recognizing achievements and the people who accomplish them.

At the American Society for Health Care Engineering (ASHE), we love to celebrate our members’ accomplishments. But even our numerous award programs (e.g., the Energy to Care Awards, Chapter Awards, Excellence in Health Care Facility Management, Vista Awards and others) do not cover the full scope of deserving health care facilities professionals. We depend on you, our health care facilities team leaders, to ensure that your team members are receiving the recognition and encouragement they deserve. 

This month offers a prime opportunity for team recognition: Health Care Facilities and Engineering Week (October 23-29). ASHE will be celebrating with you by offering new webinars, games, team gear and more! You can sign up for updates at

And to return to my opening point: “Collaboration is Key” is this year’s Health Care Facilities and Engineering Week theme. As we improve collaboration and increase recognition within our own teams, we should provide that same credit and encouragement to the other departments we collaborate with daily. 

For example, the Association for the Health Care Environment (AHE), like ASHE, is a professional membership group of the American Hospital Association. In this issue of Health Facilities Management, we celebrate the AHE Environmental Services Departments of the Year. 

I hope you will take some time to read about the amazing departments that won this year’s awards and explore what made them so successful. Perhaps their stories will inspire you to not only operationally engage with but recognize and celebrate your EVS staff and other support service colleagues.