Major Factors Driving RTLS Initiatives in Healthcare

by Joanna Wyganowska, MBA, PMP | VP of Marketing at Infinite Leap

We’ve recently compiled the results from our “The State of Real-Time Location Systems (RTLS) in Healthcare” survey, and we’re providing commentary on topics included in the report.

Our first discussion area is to highlight the major factors driving RTLS initiatives. The survey indicated that the primary factor triggering the need to deploy RTLS solutions is the need to solve a specific issue or issues within healthcare processes.

Survey responders provided the following reasons why they implemented, or are considering implementing, Real-Time Technologies:

• Spending too much time trying to find a piece of medical equipment
• Paying too much for rental equipment
• Patients complaining about not receiving proper attention or waiting too long for care
• Spoilage of vaccines, specimens, and blood products

When working with our healthcare clients, we often find that the hospital is experiencing a specific pain point (quite often pointed out by The Joint Commission or an internal process audit) and is determined to fix it. They often reach out to their industry colleagues to find out how they are dealing with these specific issues. 

The common answer they hear (or read about) is using an RTLS solution to assist with solving operational issues. This is how things typically start, and lead to a broader discussion within the organization on other potential ways real-time technologies can be leveraged.

The wide impact an RTLS system can have on healthcare organizations is well illustrated by a list of the top 10 objectives for deploying Real-Time Technologies, listed by survey responders:

1. Increase asset utilization rates
2. Reduce rental expenses
3. Increase the rate of on-time preventative maintenance on assets
4. Increase patient satisfaction scores
5. Reduce patient wait times
6. Increase patient time with providers
7. Ensure The Joint Commission compliance
8. Reduce the number of staff injuries
9. Reduce lost revenue opportunities (impacting LWBS – lost without being seen)
10. Increase number of patient visits

When we engage in our RTLS Solution Design process, we always help our clients align their objectives with their strategic initiatives. This alignment elevates the technology discussion and highlights how an RTLS initiative can have a strategic impact on the organization.

Our experience proves that organizations which think from the very beginning about how an RTLS system can move their organization forward, and not just solve a single pain point, experience sustainable and measurable impact in all strategic areas.