Foodservice Equipment & Supplies

AUG 2017

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26 • FOODSERVICE EQUIPMENT & SUPPLIES • AUGUST 2017 Patient Foodservice "In patient foodservice, for instance, room service works well for some health- care systems, while others find greater success balancing customer satisfaction with cost containment using a pod system or a hybrid of the two systems," says Tom Cooley, MA, RD, LDN, principal of TCB Partners in Quakertown, Pa. Staff- ing, elevator access, funding to refurbish the kitchen with the right equipment, nurses and other hospital staff's approval, and patients' ability to order menu items all influence the decisions that surround patient foodservice. For example, Baptist Health Medical Center in Arkansas converted its three largest facilities to room service a year ago. The change required extensive reno- vation in the kitchens and the purchase of new equipment. "Our food cost spend has decreased, while at the same time, our patient satisfaction scores are increasing," says Becky Blackard, RD, LD, system operations manager for Nutrition and Foodservice, at Baptist Health. "We have seen positive outcomes. The morale of the department is up because the staff members are very proud of the product that we are serving our patients." UCLA Health System in Los Ange- les uses its Signature Dining program, a hotel-style approach to room service, to serve patients at Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center and Mattel Children's Hospital. In the planning stage, 24-hour service seemed like the best approach to take to satisfy cus- tomers, but in reality, 13½ hours has proven sufficient. "We realized it wasn't worthwhile to employ staff after 7:30 p.m. due to the lower volume," says Patti Oliver, MS, RDN, MBA, director of Nutrition, UCLA Health. As a result, Signature Dining's room service operates between 6:45 a.m. and 7:30 p.m. Trayed food arrives on floors from the kitchen via food lifts to floor pantries. Ambassadors on the floors place ice cream and coffee on trays and serve patients within 45 minutes of their meal orders. To provide more personalized attention to patients, staff work three 13-hour days. "Patients have the same servers for all three meals, which they appreciate," Oliver adds. Though Antoinette "Toni" Wat- kins, MS, RDN, system director of Food & Nutrition Service, would like to implement room service in acute-care facilities at Virginia-based Riverside Health System, the cur- rent patient foodservice system uses a spoken-menu approach in which ambas- sadors use tablets to take patients' menu orders. "This gives personalized service, Left: Quick-dining concept The Café at The Garlands has a high-speed oven that allows staff to prepare freshly made menu items such as pizza with house-made dough in 90 seconds and a salmon entree in fewer than 5 minutes. Photo courtesy of The Garlands Below left: Consultant and executive chef Joe Beato displays pasta dishes for staff to taste at Eastern Maine Medical Center's new cafe. Below: Seth Jones, a student at Ohio State, prepares coffee drinks at EspressOasis, one of several leased operations at Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center. Photo courtesy of OSUWMC; photograph by Drew Patterson, CEC, CCA HEALTHCARE FOODSERVICE STRATEGIC

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