The Different Hospital Facilities

Like all other businesses and enterprise, even the health and human services industry face harsh economic challenges brought about by the changing times. As an entrepreneurial response to this event, institutions devise and utilize new approaches to attract more consumers. These approaches include adding facilities or services offered by the institution (Winston, 1985). Two of the most common facilities and service health institutions that have been added are the inpatient and long term facility and outpatient ambulatory facility.

Hospitals or health institutions may opt to install one of these facilities or just improve what they already have. However, before institutions decide, it is necessary to first distinguish one facility from the other. There are several factors that may distinguish ambulatory care facilities and inpatient long term facilities. From the labels itself, the latter refers to the part of the health institution or hospital which admits overnight patients or those who need to be confined.

On the other hand, the former pertains to the facility which does not have overnight patients. This is commonly cheaper and attracts more patients (Carr, 2008). As such this may be considered as an advisable addition to an existing health institution or hospital. Ambulatory Facility As mentioned, the outpatient facility, also known as an ambulatory facility, is the hospital department which takes care of patients who are not admitted for a long term treatment.

Most patients with simple ailments and may immediately be treated are accepted in this kinds of department or facility. Hospital processes that take place in an ambulatory facility include diagnosis and simple treatment (Carr, 2008). However, as the number of inpatient is reduced, outpatient departments today also provide operations or surgical services. This may be considered applicable as the most surgical processes nowadays take only a fraction of the time. Patients are no longer required to stay overnight in the hospital after operations.

Physicians allow the patients to try and recuperate at home given that they are provided all their necessities to recover from their illnesses (Carr, 2008). Most doctors who may be found in ambulatory facilities are general physicians, specialists, and diagnosticians. It is commonly managed by the clinical nurse manager who is in charged of the nursing services and the clerical coordinator of non-admitted services who is responsible for clerical services. The two coordinates with each other in order to maintain order in the department (Carr, 2008).

Ambulatory facilities, unlike inpatient long term facilities are easily maintained. As there are no rooms, only small offices, it does not occupy too much space. Thus it is easier to clean and supervise (Carr, 2008). It is also less costly as compared to inpatient departments because it does not require rooms. As such, beds, nightstands, and other hospital room equipments are not necessary (Carr, 2008). Because of the nature of the processes being done in ambulatory facilities, it is not surprising that it is the part of hospitals and institutions that is most frequently visited.

It is typically the place with a waiting area or lobby that is over-crowded in hospitals. There are even times when patients come to the ambulatory department, then transferred to long-term inpatient facility right upon diagnosis (Carr, 2008). Inpatient Long term care Facility As compared to ambulatory facilities, an inpatient long term care facility deals with patients who are admitted in the hospital for over night stay or even longer. It is the department where complex illnesses are dealt with and taken care of.

Doctors who are assigned in this facility are mostly surgeons, and specialists of complicated illnesses or diseases (Massachusetts Office of Health and Human Services, 2006). Inpatient long term care facilities are parts of the hospitals where the entire set up is important. The environment may affect recuperation process, as such, there are several factors considered in providing inpatient long term care facilities. Privacy is an important aspect in long term care facilities.

As such, it is natural that rooms are provided in this department (Massachusetts Office of Health and Human Services, 2006). In addition, since most patients in this kind of facility have complex illnesses, it requires higher level of maintenance. As compared to an ambulatory facility, in patient long term facility is more costly. It requires nurses en garde 24 hours for emergency situations on patients, doctors and maintenance staff as well. As such, this requires more employees that may eat up profit (Massachusetts Office of Health and Human Services, 2006).

Conclusion From the given information about the two types of facilities which may be added or improved in a hospital or health institution, it may be said that the best option as an additional service or facility is an outpatient department or an ambulatory facility. This refers to the facility or department responsible for patients who do not need to stay over night or for a longer period of time in the hospital. Through a brief comparison, it may be deduced that ambulatory facilities do not need rooms unlike what is needed for an inpatient long term care facility.

With that, it requires a smaller lot area and needs only minimal maintenance than an inpatient facility. More importantly, it calls for fewer employees as it is not open for the entire day. As such, ambulatory facilities are less costly to maintain than an inpatient long term care facility. Furthermore, outpatient departments are more frequented by people. It is common knowledge that more people, is indicative of more profit. With lesser cost and higher profits, this may only mean that an additional ambulatory facility is an advisable addition to any hospital or health institution.


  • Carr, R. F. (2008). Outpatient Clinic. Whole Building Design Guide. Retrieved March 24, 2009, from http://www. wbdg. org/design/outpatient. php
  • Massachusetts Office of Health and Human Services. (2006). Inpatient Facility Feasibility Commission Report. Health and Human Services. Retrieved March 24, 2009, from http://www. mass. gov/Eeohhs2/docs/dmh/facility_commission. pdf
  • Winston, W. J. (1985). Marketing Ambulatory Care Services. Philadelphia: Haworth Press.

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