Review the little things to help your life safety and emergency preparation readiness game
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March 1, 2019
Often in healthcare facilities, it’s the small details missed that can raise the ire of a surveyor or, in worst-case scenarios, lead to accidents that can cause tragic patient deaths. So maybe it’s time to take another look at the little things you can do to help keep your facility ready for the emergencies that may seem small—at least until they become huge.
Do you know where your facility’s fire response plan is? Sure, you’ll probably say that it’s in your computer and if anyone needs to see it, they’ll look there. But what if the power goes out? Would you know where to find the hard copy of the plan? Apparently, surveyors want to know.
According to Steven MacArthur, consultant for the Greeley Company in Danvers, Massachusetts, who also writes the weekly Mac’s Safety Space blog, a quick glance through The Joint Commission’s Environment of Care (EC), Life Safety (LS), and Emergency Management (EM) standards and elements of performance (EP) reveals what he calls “Easter eggs” about the availability of a written copy of your fire response plan.
“That makes sense to me; you can never completely rely on electronic access (it is very reliable, but a hard-copy backup seems reasonable),” he says. “The odd component of the performance element is the specificity of the location for the fire response plan to be available—readily available with the telephone operator or security.”