A Guide to Healthcare Workstations in 2022
By Team Altus
Published Apr 22, 2020
| Updated Sep 19, 2022
| 4 min read
Are you planning to upgrade your healthcare and medical workstations, or looking to learn more about what kinds of workstations fit into your department? We compiled a guide on the best medical workstations for the different areas of healthcare, and what their benefits are.
Planning for Healthcare and Medical Workstations
When it comes to searching for new workstations, understanding what’s available and best practices before you select your workstation supplier will save you money and time down the line. Keep reading for our healthcare workstation guide and see how Altus’ team will support you throughout the entire process.
Acute Care Units
Acute care units focus on providing the best possible healing environment. They also strive to enhance clinician satisfaction by tailoring their workflows to the small space by focusing on workflow solutions, compact medical workstations, and ergonomic comfort. For those who work in acute care, the best workstations are those that have a focus on ergonomics, specifically bedside wall-mounted workstations and powered carts are some of the best equipment options.
Bedside wall-mounts offer ergonomic sit-to-stand capabilities, so any clinician who walks up to the workstation is able to match it to their height. They also offer the most compact option for any workspace, which is increasingly important in acute care where the space is already smaller than that of long-term care.
Wall-mounts can fold up to be within 10 inches from the wall, and when extended, it offers the perfect triangle of care between clinicians, patients, and technology. These types of workstations allow for a productive and healthy workspace to be achieved with little effort on part of the clinician.
Powered carts follow the same suit as wall-mounted workstations. They are built to be compact and mobile so they can be wheeled into, or out of, a patient’s room with ease. These types of mobile workstation carts with a battery have a conscious effort on being lightweight to clinician strain while they push it throughout their floor. Battery powered carts also offer a way for clinicians to not have to worry about cords in an already cramped room, or the charge of their computers while they input EHR data. Instead, the batteries last an entire shift, and clinicians can easily store critical tools that need to be accessed without interrupting the ergonomic flow. These workstations on wheels, just like wall-mounted workstations, are built for ergonomics and are able to easily conform to fit the height of the clinician using it, whether sitting or standing next to a patient’s bed.
Long Term Facilities
Long-term facilities are designed to keep the patient as comfortable as possible. To achieve this, they focus on clinician safety and satisfaction so they can then offer an elevated level of care and make the patients feel as comfortable as possible during their extended stay. For this type of care, having an intuitive workstation is imperative.
An intuitive workstation will not only adjust to the user’s ergonomic comfort but will support communication between the patient, clinician, and technology. The best type of workstation for long-term care includes non-powered mobile medical computer carts and medicine trolley carts.
Non-powered carts, often referred to as kidney carts, offer the same mobility as powered carts, just more lightweight. Since they don’t need to carry extra equipment, they are lightweight, so clinicians are able to have an additional layer of flexibility weaved into their ergonomic workstations. Each non-powered computer workstation offers 18” of effortless sit-to-stand height adjustment to allow clinicians to be comfortable while they offer the highest level of care to their long-term residents.
For the long-term care units that have a lot of charting and medication delivery, and still need a lightweight workstation solution, medical workstations built for medication delivery are the solution. These carts have an intuitive design in them, so from height adjustment to monitors working on a swivel, clinicians don’t have to think about the way to position in. These medicine distribution trolleys are also designed to be secure, so clinicians can be confident while distributing medications to their patients. When they grab the medicine and offer it to their patient bedside, the drawer can be shut and automatically locked. Not only does this reduce errors, but secure storage decreases clinicians’ time spent traveling from the pharmacy and supply room.
Rethinking Healthcare in 2022
Healthcare is rapidly changing because of the global pandemic COVID-19. Although we still don’t fully understand the outcome, the changes are already being seen, with the most obvious being a new focus on telehealth. Hospitals have been pressured to shift to virtual healthcare to address patient and clinician demands while also protecting others from the spread of the virus by avoiding in-person visits. Ever since the focus has shifted to telemedicine, hospitals are embracing the shift because telehealth expands care capabilities, avoids expenses, and increases market share.
Telehealth is its own category of workstations. For any hospital looking to implement a telehealth program of its own, looking for the right kind of workstation that still makes clinicians comfortable can be a daunting task. The best telemedicine carts are those that are mobile, lightweight, and versatile.
Telehealth equipment that offers both bedside visits to family and for physicians to conduct virtual visits is a must-have. Mobile telemedicine carts tend to be moved throughout a hospital, so having an option that is easy for clinicians to push and allows them to not be in pain is imperative. Telemedicine, often referred to as tablet carts are great tools for hospitals to employ and allow them to keep their patient load a manageable number.
Designing for the Future
Clinicians plan to use their medical computer carts for several years and need a workstation solution that will streamline everyday tasks while supporting their workflows. To match these needs, Altus designs and manufactures medical workstations that are flexible enough to accommodate changing practices and advancements in technology throughout the equipment’s lifespan.
Each Altus cart is engineered to offer the most durable option to keep clinicians moving for years to come. Looking for more information on our workstations, or to try one for yourself? Contact us to get started with an evaluation sample.