Among the industries that are most in need of elevator consulting is the hospital industry. We have found in our work that often times hospital elevators and escalators are grossly neglected. The hospitals can be in violation of many safety issues consisting of annual safety test, safety lighting, maintenance logs, and Fire Service just to name a few. Hospitals often need to be in compliance vis-a-vis their local City and Fire Safety codes but also vis-a-vis Joint Commission, Medicare, and Medicaid regulations. Yet we may find violations in many hospitals that we work with. Ironically, hospitals have the most sophisticated technologies to save lives and have high standards of excellence yet they may be jeopardizing the general public, their staff and their patients on a daily basis when it comes to their elevators and escalators!
If you work for a hospital, one option is to reach out to The Elevator Consultants for a consultation. We can audit and inspect the work that is (and isn’t) being done and provide recommendations to improve vertical transportation and efficiency. Indeed, we have been consultants for major elevator modernization efforts as well.
AN EXAMPLE OF ELEVATOR PROBLEMS
Here’s an example of an extreme denial of spend at a major hospital including a Children’s hospital in downtown Chicago. Working as the elevator consultants for the project, we were able to uncover over $2.5 million of careless spending within 2 months. The hospital purchased a building that had over $400K in needed elevator repairs. The hospital was aware of this at the time of purchasing and need not receive any compensation for this. The hospital failed to do their due diligence. Hospitals also failed to conduct several test as stated above resulting in an overspend of over $2 million. This $2 million is an ongoing cost per year. The elevator service provider benefited greatly with these margins and not to mentioned “took care of” the facility management company. Our objective on this type of project has been to identify wasteful spending and improve the ROI.
POTENTIAL CONFLICTS OF INTEREST
Working for the building owners, we can act in their interest and uncover hidden conflicts of interests in the various actors. For example, hospitals can be such a bureaucracy in of themselves and then in several cases like this one they have a major property management firm as a middleman. There are also Group Purchasing Organizations that may be involved; however, this was not true in this case. These major property management firms have no elevator experience nor do they have any true fiduciary responsibility to the hospitals. They do have their budgets and these elevator cost are never scrutinized or evaluated since often few people (or no one) understand the complexity of elevators or escalators. Elevators are considered the black hole or the mystic in all buildings since the building engineers are not licensed to work on them. Therefore, these elevator problems are constantly just being shuffled around until the next management comes in or until there is a violation.
When Hospitals have a center of Excellence or a best practices within their organization looking at all areas of operations is critical. Joint Commission and Department of Public Health Medicare and Medicaid should enforce that this work is completed prior to allowing the Hospitals to operate. Hospitals can institute great control, transparence and accountability to save the hospitals money and the taxpayers while maintain safety.
In this one case, we assisted a major hospital in getting accurate information on its expenditures and issues. If you are in the hospital industry and looking for one of the top elevator consulting firms, we can help.