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ASHE develops physical environment resources for COVID-19 recovery

Society’s aim is to assist health care facilities in resuming normal operations as they enter various stages of recovery from the pandemic

| | May 27, 2020 | 12:21 pm
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CHICAGO, Illinois, United States, 27 May 2020: ASHE (American Society for Health Care Engineering) has developed physical environment resources for COVID-19 recovery, the Society said through a Press release, adding that the aim of the initiative is to assist health care facilities in resuming normal operations as they enter various stages of recovery from the pandemic, from pre-planning to long-term needs.

The patient surge has impacted the health care physical environment in ways never predicted – with facilities being reimagined, renovated, expanded, enlarged and underutilised simultaneously, ASHE said, adding that recovering from this state will require significant effort. ASHE, working with a group of subject matter experts, has developed specific health care physical environment recovery measures and a modifiable checklist to help facilities navigate during this time.

Our reaction to this emergency has required agile assessments, multiple mitigations, perpetual preparation and rapid responses, and it will require a resolute recovery, ASHE said.

Up to this point, most emergency responses have been based on a local response, as most disasters are local events –local surge, hurricane, earthquake, fire or blizzard, ASHE said. Some disasters impact significantly large geographical areas, but until now none have impacted the entire nation and the world at large, ASHE said. The large-scale response to this pandemic has invited a broader scope of perspective to emergency management. While surge response specifically is focused on local health care coalitions, the procuring and distribution of personal protective equipment (PPE) is happening on facility, coalition, state, regional and federal levels, ASHE said. This multilevel approach has created confusion and frustration for many involved and especially for those in need of PPE, ASHE added.

Recovering from the impacts of this pandemic and documenting lessons learned are vital and will require significant planning and action, ASHE said. Not only will it require facilities to reimagine their responsibilities to their service population, but it will also require them to coordinate reopening with their coalition and state, ASHE said. This guide, ASHE added, has been developed to assist health care facility managers in planning for and carrying out recovery measures to restore operational capabilities to appropriate post-COVID-19 pandemic levels.

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