EMG was contracted to create a management plan for the VA Central Western Mass Healthcare System (VACWM) with the following objectives:
- effectively manage utility system risks by using best industry practices,
- optimize resources by using efficient utility system processes and lifecycle management of equipment,
- improve staff performance through effective utility system education and training,
- improve staff and patient satisfaction by providing a safe physical environment.
The management plan describes the framework to manage risks associated with and to improve program performance for critical utility systems. To develop this plan a survey was conducted of the facilities and systems at VACWM by professionals experienced in the maintenance and operations of critical utility systems. This survey was conducted over the course of a week and involved physical inspections of all facilities.
The building occupancy and functional activities conducted within each facility were reviewed with the engineering staff to determine which buildings were considered Critical as defined by the International Building Code. The building systems and equipment within each facility and centralized systems on campus were inspected to develop an equipment inventory and to assess the Risk of each piece of equipment to patient health. Maintenance procedures for each piece of equipment were developed based on manufacturers’ recommendations, where available, or generally accepted standards of practice for healthcare facilities when manufacturers’ recommendations were not available.
An implementation plan was developed that prioritized the critical utility system equipment maintenance based on Criticality and Risk. The implementation plan established four steps of maintenance that should be phased in immediately to improve the reliability of the existing systems. The implementation plan also laid out the steps required to use the Equipment Inventory and PM Schedules.