What is a Certified Healthcare Facility Manager?

A Certified Healthcare Facility Manager is a health care administrator who has passed the prestigious CHFM exam through the American Hospital Association (AHA).

Health Care Facility Management

Health care facility managers must oversee financial, technical and administrative operations within a health care organization. They must plan, organize, implement, evaluate and monitor all facility programs and departments. Part of this involves identifying problems and process deficiencies in order to develop appropriate corrective actions. Therefore, they must ensure the reliability and functionality of all facility assets, services and personnel. For example, this may involve staffing, service and equipment recommendations based on space, demand and productivity metrics. This also involves complex staff scheduling. Other duties involve reviewing monthly financial statements and operational reports in order to provide facility shareholders with concise updates. Health care facility managers also perform HR related duties, such as recruiting, interviewing, hiring, disciplining and coaching employees in order to ensure high levels of quality patient care. Thus, they must ensure that all employees obtain the necessary continuing education credits.

The HCFM Exam

Candidates for the Certified Healthcare Facility Manager exam must meet basic education and experience requirements, such as a Bachelor’s degree with three years of experience, or an Associate’s degree with five years of experience. The exam consists of 110-multiple choice questions that cover five fundamental categories. These include:

  • finance
  • administration
  • compliance
  • planning, design and construction
  • maintenance and operations

Of the 100 questions, 100 are scored and ten are placed as trial questions for future exams. The exam is typically given via computers at designated testing centers and candidates are given two hours to complete it.

How to Prepare for the CHFM Exam?

Exam candidates must be familiar with health care facility operations, administration, code compliance, finance management and design and construction. They must have an intimate knowledge of how to properly operate and maintain building systems and equipment. This includes HVAC, electrical, plumbing, refrigeration, hot water, fire protection, medical equipment, emergency power and safety and security. If possible, they should study how to plan, design and direct construction projects. This includes learning how to solicit and evaluate bids with contractors, architects and engineers. Exam candidates should be very familiar with all applicable local, federal and private certification codes and standards.

Health Care Facility Manager Job Requirements

The minimum job requirement for a health care facility manager is an accredited degree and a few years of supervisory experience. Although a health care related degree is preferred, a business management or administration degree is acceptable. Successful job candidates have practical knowledge of staffing and scheduling in order to maximize productivity. They must also have a working knowledge of standard regulatory guidelines, including TJC, OSHA, State, and local laws. Candidates should have a strong technical knowledge of environmental services and how to effectively utilize resources. Ideal candidates have excellent presentation, leadership, accounting and statistical analysis skills. Candidates must have a demonstrable history of exemplary customer service, operations management and regulatory compliance. Certified Healthcare Facility Manager (CHFM) certification is preferred.

To conclude, a Certified Healthcare Facility Manager is an administrative health care expert who oversees health care facility operations with the help of AHA approved certification.