Innovating the Patient Medical Experience with Modular Hospital Design

CEO of EIR Healthcare, Grant Geiger talks about innovating the patient medical experience with modular hospital rooms that immensely decrease time and money spent when building hospitals.

Interview – Transcript

Grant is a Healthcare Executive with over 10 years experience in the Healthcare Industry. Formerly with Siemens AG, and Cerner Corporation, Grant served in a variety of executive roles for both companies. With Siemens, Grant was most recently the Global Business Manager for syngo Lab Inventory Manager a 1.0 product which was released under his leadership. Grant was responsible for country expansion strategy, development, marketing, and communications for the product. Additional roles included Director, Data Center Operations – PMO and Product Management, Senior Consultant and also Financial Analyst. Grant was also recognized as a Siemens Corporate Top Talent, a designation reserved for the top 1% of employees in the company. Grant has a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration dual degree, International Business and Marketing, and German Minor from Drexel University in Philadelphia, PA.

Neal Howard: Welcome to this health supplier segment here on Health Professional Radio. Glad that you could join us. I’m your host, Neal Howard. Our guest today is CEO of EIR Healthcare, Mr. Grant Geiger and he’s going to tell us about what could be termed as a hospital room in a box. We’re going to talk about modular design. Welcome to the program, Grant. How are you?

Grant Geiger: I’m doing well, Neal. Thanks for having me.

N: Well, as I said, we’re here to talk about a hospital room in a box. First, tell me what your background is in the healthcare industry and how you ended up being the founder of EIR Healthcare?

G: Great question. My story with healthcare actually is somewhat unconventional. I started in the healthcare space because of my interest in IT and software solutions. And so when I actually left University, I started right out of college with a job at Siemens the engineering firm and worked on software implementation and consulting projects with different hospitals around the country, around here in the US and helping them understand the changes that were coming particularly at that time which were around Meaningful Use and the Affordable Care Act and looking at what solutions we offer, what types of products that we have that would help our clients at the time and those health systems make the right choices and be able to provide really interesting and we think compelling software that would help their patients. That was my first jump into the healthcare space but with EIR, the story there is actually that this was an idea and a design that was started by my father. My father had a patient experience as I like to say. He went in for a routine surgery for his eyes and his background was actually as an industrial engineer. And when he was sitting in the hospital and recovering, he really took note of the way the hospital operated, the way it was built and basically, really the functionality of it and from his experience in the industrial space, there are ways that we can definitely improve the healthcare experience. And so he started off on that effort to basically develop what is today EIR healthcare. Unfortunately, he passed away in 2015 but I decided at that point that there was an opportunity and I also wanted to continue his legacy of what he had started but there’s an opportunity there too again as I said improve healthcare as he thought and so I jumped in both feet right in those first and never really looked back. We’re launching our product here MedModular later this year. So we’re really really excited.

N: MedModular. We’ve all heard of modular homes. Is this something similar or is it simply something to get our mind ready for the brand new trend?

G: Sure. No. It is definitely somewhat of a primer to get you ready for obviously modular is the term that we’re all I think at least we’ve heard before. What I like to really talk about what that is that the modular industry and you talk about homes particularly this industry that’s actually, it’s been around for 40, 50 years. What I always like to cite is actually, if you are familiar with Disneyworld and I think on some level all of us are the Contemporary Resort, actually built in I think it was 1971, that was actually all prefabricated modular rooms for the hotel. So the concepts and the ideas behind this has been around but what we’re doing that’s a little bit different is we took a step back and said let’s take a look at other industries that are doing similar techniques and what can we learn from them to bring to healthcare and to bring to the construction industry. And so what we’ve developed is actually using techniques and the technology is very similar to what they do for shipbuilding and specifically what they do for cabins on cruise ships. So if you’re familiar with Royal Caribbean or Carnival or any of the large cruise ships and their operators, all those cabins on a cruise ship are actually prefabricated and they’re modular, they’re built in a factory. The shipbuilding industry has actually perfected that technique I would say over the last 20 years. It’s been going on longer than that but they’ve perfected it to a point now where they are extremely efficient. They’re able to really drive down costs and deliver a very high-quality product. And so that’s where we started this journey and said how do we take that concept and bring that to health care. So we are a little bit different than I think probably the average modular that product or offering.

N: How much does EIR fall back on old design as far as hospital ships in militaries of different countries you’re borrowing from shipbuilding to design brick-and-mortar hospital care? Is this basically a hospital ship on the land?

G: Yes. That’s a very good comment. I think there are certain areas there that we’re taking and taking best practice from the shipbuilding side. The shipbuilding background and for those folks there’s a what we call black hole construction and this was a technique that has been used for a while and actually started if you look at the Liberty ships that were built during World War II, they use some of those techniques of what I refer to black hole construction. So those medical ships as you mentioned, Neal, used on some of those techniques as well and so absolutely there is definitely a part of that in what we’re doing today. To give you sort of a real-world example that I like to cite is Royal Caribbean has the world’s largest cruise ship today on the water and it was built a few years ago. It’s 3,800 staterooms or cabins if you will and that ship was built from 10 to 18 months. We look at that and say, “Well. Jeez. They did 3,800 rooms in 18 months. How can we learn from that and how do we build a 300-bed patient tower and can we do it in two years? Can we do it in three years? Eighteen months is great but let’s start and find a way to improve the industry today and provide a better product.

N: How do you present the attractiveness of the cost savings? Obviously, efficiency is an issue but does it run as efficiently on the medical side as let’s say a Carnival Cruise would run when it comes to pleasure or luxury cruising? I mean it runs extremely efficient. I mean there are few glitches here and there which is to be expected. But in addition to the efficiency, what about the savings and costs?

G: Right. So what we like to look at is we take a look at the ROI and we say we are able to provide a reduction in costs or reduction in expenditure based on volume. So what we’re saying there is we’re looking for, as I’ve mentioned earlier, the 300-bed patient tower or the new care facility that’s going to be built or new medical campus that’s going to have multiple patients. The opportunity where we scale and where we have more, we’re able to really drive down savings and uptrend cost for our clients. But then we also look at it from what I said earlier, ROI perspective. What we say is if we’re able to deliver this for you faster and what we have seen and this technology has now been used on the hotel business, the hospitality side and what we see there and what we tell our healthcare clients is we’re looking at a 40% reduction in time. And time, as we all know, equals money and so we say there’s an ROI opportunity there for you because if you think about your construction loan, you think about all the subcontractors that show up every day to work on it. We’re able to work with all those people and we will but we’re actually going to make this faster and get that facility for you open sooner and by the way, get those patients in and get them treated sooner. So we really focus on the ROI component of it.

N: Talk just a couple of seconds on the aging aspect of healthcare as that relates to this modular design. Are we talking improvement and patient experience even in the geriatric field? Because those are some very special needs there.

G: Yes. Absolutely. That’s a very good point. We do think that there are opportunities there. What we see is that we’re now on a point where the society is very interested in aging in place. They’re not necessarily as interested in assisted living facilities and they want to be part of the family ecosystem. So what we think is interesting is how do we use our modular technology to provide a better patient experience or a better experience for elder care but how do we blend that with the residential piece that we talked about earlier. So can we improve let’s say the room, the bedroom of a residential area of a home that will actually allow the elder care to take place there? So I think that there are areas that we want to explore and we need to continue to go down that road. But I certainly think that’ll be a growing space in the future.

N: Well, we’d like to learn some more about EIR and some more about this modular design trend in healthcare. Where can we go online and get some more information?

G: Yes. So you can go right to our website. It’s www.eirhealthcare.com and once you’re there, there’s actually a specific page right for MedModular, the product that I mentioned earlier and we’re launching later this summer. So definitely be on the lookout for more.

N: Grant, thank you so much for coming in talking with us today.

G: Thanks, Neal.

N: You’ve been listening to Health Professional Radio. I’m your host, Neal Howard in conversation with Mr. Grant Geiger. We’ve been talking about innovating the patient medical experience with modular hospital homes that greatly decreased time and money spent when building hospitals. Transcripts and audio of the program are available at hpr.fm. You can subscribe to the podcast and listen in and download a SoundCloud and iTunes as well and be sure to visit our affiliates page at hpr.fm.

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