Most healthcare technology management (HTM) professionals are tasked with documenting their work in a computerized maintenance management system (CMMS); however, optimizing the use of this tool can be a challenge.
“In our consulting work, we see too many HTM programs fall into the ‘garbage in, garbage out’ trap,” said Matthew Baretich, president of Baretich Engineering Inc.
Too often, he added, the CMMS becomes a time-consuming repository of “arbitrary data entry rather than as a source of useful, actionable information. When properly configured, a competent CMMS becomes a valued tool.”
To achieve this goal, Baretich, along with co-author Ted Cohen, have extensively updated AAMI’s CMMS guide, the first revision to this resource in 14 years.
“A lot has changed since the second edition,” Baretich said. “Many of the basic principles were still relevant, but HTM practice and CMMS capabilities had evolved substantially. It was time for a new edition.”
Some of these new capabilities, according to Cohen, an HTM consultant and part-time project clinical engineer at UC-Davis Health in California, include dashboards, interfaces with configuration management databases and other systems, modules to manage alternative equipment maintenance plans, and data analytics packages.
The third edition of “Computerized Maintenance Management Systems for Healthcare Technology Management” outlines the basic principles of CMMS design and operation, as well as identifies how to effectively use the system to generate meaningful data.
“The CMMS needs to do a good job of making data entry easy, yet comprehensive enough to recall the ‘story’ of what happened on a particular repair,” Cohen said. “The CMMS also needs to be flexible/configurable so it meets the needs of different institutions, yet still performs error checking to help stop erroneous and incomplete data from being entered.”
A new section of the book tackles essential CMMS “how tos”: how to use the system for standards compliance, financial management, and equipment planning; how to maintain data integrity so the CMMS provides useful information; and how to select and implement a CMMS product.
“If they are not currently using their CMMS to its full potential, hopefully this book will help them improve their current CMMS use by improving data integrity and helping them capture more data,” Cohen said.
“Computerized Maintenance Management Systems for Healthcare Technology Management, 3rd Edition” is available through the AAMI Store, www.aami.org/store. The cost is $89 for AAMI members and $129 for non-members.
New Podcast Focuses on Cybersecurity
With cybersecurity attacks on the rise in health care and a growing appreciation for the threats posed to patients, AAMI podcast host Terry Baker sat down with cybersecurity expert Axel Wirth at the AAMI 2017 Conference & Expo in Austin, Texas.
According to Wirth, who is a distinguished technical architect for Symantec Corporation and a member of the BI&T Editorial Board, patch management is more important than ever – yet it remains a challenge for most hospitals.
“I don’t think there’s any other industry that has such a diversity of different devices from different manufacturers run in an environment where the pieces are so dependent on each other. That makes it difficult to, for example, take one device down, patch it, and reboot it without affecting other devices,” Wirth said.
During the podcast, Wirth shared his tips for patch management and his “defense in depth” framework that he believes all health care facilities should adopt. This AAMI podcast, along with more than a dozen others, is available at www.aami.org/newsviews/podcasts.
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