Versus Helps Columbus Regional Recover From Devastating Flood

June 23, 2010 Topic: Outcomes in the News 

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“The flood was devastating,” says Dave Lenart, P.E., Director of Facilities and Materials Management. Columbus Regional’s entire basement, containing much of the hospital’s medical and lab equipment was filled floor to ceiling with contaminated water, mud and silt. The first floor also sustained heavy damage from standing contaminated water and mud. Veronica Kagley, Technology Coordinator adds, “Every system critical to the support and operation of the hospital that was in the basement was destroyed.”

Initially, everyone believed it would be a year to two years before the hospital was back up and running — that’s what it had been for other hospitals that have sustained similar damage. “We’re one of only two hospitals within an hour’s drive from here,” Lenart explains. “A long recovery simply wasn’t an option. Our entire staff pulled together. We worked long hours and engineered what fixes we could. We re-opened our doors five months after the flood.” Columbus Regional’s outstanding achievements have been recognized by many, including Today’s Facility Manager, which honored Dave Lenart as the 2010 Facility Executive of the Year for his dedication, forethought and ingenuity during the cleanup and restoration process.

What may be surprising to some people is that insurance and FEMA only covered three quarters of the costs related to infrastructure and systems. “We were very blessed, though,” says Kagley. “We had many vendors, Versus included, offer to cut costs and do what they could to help bring our systems and services back online.” Today, the Versus solution is back, helping Columbus Regional’s staff automate patient flow throughout the facility.

Versus opted to provide the latest software viewing and reporting capabilities, with room and patient status, alerts and notifications (such as wait time alerts or notification that a patient has returned from radiology). “It was the right thing to do — provide Columbus Regional with the most current software version,” stated HT Snowday, CTO Versus. “They are now better prepared for enterprise expansion — something they were interested in before and this will make them more flexible as they continue to add other RTLS solution applications.” The Versus Advantages solution currently provides enterprise asset tracking and is integrated to Rauland-Borg’s Responder IV nurse call system.

“The value of the Versus system is not only inherent, but also perceived,” says Kagley. “It helps with patient satisfaction, and it was one of those systems that was missed that the staff really wanted back.” Columbus Regional had tremendous successes with the Versus solution when it was first implemented in 2005. For example, they reduced ED patient wait times by 63% and ensured equipment was available when and where it was needed. Columbus Regional also helped housekeepers and other staff members feel safer in their behavioral health units by giving them Versus badges, with the ability to call for assistance at any time. Staff receiving the alert knew who needed help and where that person was.

“There was never any doubt that we would bring the Versus Advantages solution back,” says Lenart. “Our staff relies on Versus for hands-free communication and location information. Versus eliminates the realm of uncertainty, so there’s no void in terms of location — no questioning.”