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COVID's Lesson for Cancer: Make Your Operations Nimble and Flexible

Healthcare demanded a lot of its employees during the last several years, and it looks like another wave may require the same extraordinary effort again. "Heroes Work Here" banners may be met by patients this winter with, "Obviously!" A huge thank you in advance. Thank you for the comfort and the care.

At TSK Products, we match medical equipment to specific conditions, so instead of human capital and workforce issues, we focus on the mechanical deployment of solutions to patient throughput, their comfort, and how treatment and care effects staff safety. My admiration for the anyone delivering care in the health field is the last thing I'll mention on the subject; I'll confine my observations to the work environment.

A major lesson we observed as we worked with hospitals and cancer clinics throughout the pandemic was learned in the scramble for medical seating as the Emergency Department and ICU were inundated. What seemed like a luxury in 2019 - powered recliners - became the equipment Operations Managers wanted for their flexibility to work in several department and for a multitude of treatments or procedures. Our take away was to draw on the "Plug and Play" functionality of the Adeen height adjustable, fully powered chair to serve as many tasks as possible.

One of the first applications of a multi-use installation was at a cancer center which used the Adeen with its 440 lbs. patient weight limit in both their "Poke-N-Go" area and in Infusion for their heavier patients. Another cancer center choose the Adeen for an area where Phlebotomy and Vascular Access shared the space with infusion and Nursing configured the chair uniquely with different arms on either side so nurses could access the patient easily no matter how the chair was being used.

Our vision is to see one chair used throughout the clinic where the same chair, with minor tweaks performed on-the-fly, on demand, can prevent back ups, create overflow areas without blinking an eye, and maintain operations in a manner desired by both administration and patients.

The goal of being nimble and flexible is to produce smooth operations (measured in throughput, operational efficiency, and safety) and to drive cost out of the system while allowing nurses and physicians every chance to produce the best outcomes possible. At small facilities, we heard objection to the price of the Adeen even when compared to a powered recliner without the safety found in the ergonomics of the Adeen's height adjustment feature.

When we look at Return on Investment, the Adeen actually performs better. The ROI must figure the cost to maintain the equipment so it can provide and consistently produce the smooth operations desired and discussed above. We looked the common medical recliner which has the same recliner mechanism used in your living with a medical vinyl wrapped on top. The mechanism will eventually weaken and require a change (the equivalent of performing an engine rebuild or exchange in a car)

One facility observed that interiors get upgraded well within the life expectancy of our Adeen. To take a change of color pallet into account, we ran the numbers again, this time changing out the fabric (remember me mentioning that the chair's superpower is that it is "Plug-N-Play" which applies to the exchange ability of each part that attaches to the chair foundation)

We obviously love the Adeen for meeting challenges presented to us at various facilities and departments. From a supplier perspective, if we can standardize on one product and customize it as a customer or facility demands, our operations are improved. The same is true for our customer - improved operations - with much larger financial consequences. Improved patient throughput (and therefore better patient satisfaction), safer environment, and lower capital costs all combine to make for a better workplace for the Heroes we continue to call on.

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