Drawbase Software enables integrated facility management solution at LifeBridge Health System

Newton 08 January 2004LifeBridge Health System facility staff needed a tool that would facilitate better management of their hospital facilities, including Baltimore's Sinai Hospital. In evaluating different solutions, Robert Turner, vice president of campus services for the LifeBridge Health System, had a stringent set of criteria in mind. He required that the new software serve as a high-level management tool that would be easy-to-use, eliminate repetitious, time-consuming tasks, and above all, integrate seamlessly with the hospital's preventative maintenance scheduling package. Drawbase from Drawbase Software, a wholly owned subsidiary of Graphisoft, was the only software platform that ultimately met LifeBridge's high demands.


Drawbase is an all-in-one software solution used to design, draw, track and actively manage facilities. It provides the health care system with tools for 2D drafting and 3D visualization, an integrated database, enhanced reporting features and mapping capabilities. Combining Computer-Aided Design (CAD) functionality with a database management software programme, the software enables hospital facility staff to create and revise facility drawings while the database tracks descriptive information.

Based in Baltimore, LifeBridge Health provides a broad array of high quality, cost effective health care and health related services through a group of two full service hospitals and one long-term care facility. The system has more than 1,6 million square feet of building space, including facilities to house and care for more than 700 patients.

"With multiple facilities, each construction or facility project is critical. The status of one project can significantly impact other areas of the hospital", stated Gary Mende, the director of facilities operation for the LifeBridge Health System at Sinai. "One minor repair can affect an entire wing. I need to know what office and vice president to contact, what departments will be affected, and how to best use the available space that I have. Drawbase provides the functionality I need to easily manage all those factors."

Both Robert Turner and Gary Mende have leveraged Drawbase to gain measurable gains in staff efficiency and time savings. "Previously, we were not able to view the full scope of the building portfolio that we manage", Gary Mende stated. The hospital facility staff relied heavily on the knowledge and experience of employees but had no central repository for accessing the most up-to-date information. The combination of Drawbase's CAD functionality and database management has allowed LifeBridge to leverage existing CAD database information within the programme to increase productivity and significantly reduce duplication of efforts within its facility management programme. "Now, I know exactly where I can find the information I need. Drawbase provides my staff with reliable, current facility information. Using it, I know my team is working efficiently and that we're not repeating tasks or duplicating past efforts", he continued.

"It's much easier to work with graphical representations of buildings rather than raw data. I can just click on an object, and Drawbase takes information from our preventative maintenance database and shows all facility data on a single screen", Gary Mende explained. "A picture of a room layout is worth a thousand words in my work."

This factor was also evident to Gary Mende in his ability to communicate more effectively with LifeBridge Health management team and facility staff as well as regulatory agencies such as JCAHO and Maryland department of OSHA. With the implementation services offered by Com Tek CADD, LifeBridge Health's local Drawbase dealer, LifeBridge was able to quickly load data and prepare for government agency reviews. Using Drawbase, LifeBridge can show agency representatives easily that the hospital system is complying with JCAHO regulations to receive Medicare funding from the federal government.

LifeBridge has also benefited from Drawbase's powerful layout and record-keeping tools. Based on its use of these features, the organisation plans to add security systems and the location of safety items such as fire extinguishers and certain pieces of critical medical equipment within each room of the hospital. LifeBridge Health is a regional health organisation that includes Sinai Hospital of Baltimore, Northwest Hospital Center, Levindale Hebrew Geriatric Center and Hospital, Jewish Convalescent and Nursing Home, and related subsidiaries and affiliates.

The Com Tek CADD Company was formed in 1988 with the sole purpose of providing state-of-the-art Computer Aided Facilities Management (CAFM) and Computerized Maintenance Management (CMMS) tools to the Facilities Management discipline. Operating as a full-service Drawbase reseller for over 15 years, Com Tek CADD has more than 500 clients.

Leslie Versweyveld

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