By Jay Juffre

I don’t stay in as many hotels as I used to, but occasionally, business, or personal travel calls for it.

Usually when I check in, either the person behind the front desk is kind enough to offer me a bottle of water or there is a complimentary bottle sitting in my room waiting for me. Regardless, my usual routine is to put it in the fridge to let it get cold for the next day. Recently I noticed an interesting new feature on the mini fridge where I was staying at – a timer. That’s right. There was a two-hour timer which essentially cooled the appliance temporarily before it would shut off. If you did not want your water to return to room temperature, you had to reset the timer. Now this was not an inexpensive hotel, but this tweak certainly made me feel that way. No doubt someone at their corporate office probably figured they could save a few pennies by having the unit switch off, but the impact on guests far outweighed any benefit. The same is true when it comes to patient care.

With the inflationary headwinds we have been seeing, everyone is looking for creative ways to cut costs where they can. However, we should also think twice if our actions will hurt patient’s perceptions (or reality) when it comes to their care. Smart organizations are finding the balance.

Some are even looking for ways to spend a little more on the things that will help drive better patient care because they know it will help drive revenues through referrals, recommendations, or reimbursements while at the same time looking for ways to save money in areas that don’t negatively affect the patient or their staffs. Be strategic in your thinking and those pennies you spend will lead to dollars quickly.

Jay Juffre is Executive Vice President, ImageFIRST. For more information on ImageFIRST, call 1-800-932-7472 or visit