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  • Writer's pictureTom Petersen

Environment of Care - Committees

Updated: Aug 28, 2023

EES Healthy Environment is the second post in our series on the implementation, maintenance and continued improvement of the Joint Commission Environment of Care program (EOC) standard. This series began in our August 2007 post.

Have You Established Your Committee?

This is the second article on the implementation, maintenance and continued improvement of the Joint Commission Environment of Care program (EOC) standard. Our first post kicked off the Environment of Care development process by suggesting the use of a Master Plan. To continue with this process will require the assistance and resources from a variety of sources. This can be accomplished by developing an Environment of Care committee.

An Environment of Care Committee should be a multidisciplinary group focused on the continuous improvement of Environment of Care. The committee should consist of select representatives from the service and support departments with primary and collaborative responsibility for providing a safe, secure, and comfortable environment to facilitate patient care.

The organizational responsibility and structure of the Environment of Care Program at a hospital or health care facility requires a partnership and strong communications between the Environment of Care Committee and the hospital departments and associated committees. These would include existing committees such as Quality of Care and Patient Safety as well as the Safety, Security, Waste Management, Medical Equipment, Facilities and Maintenance departments to name a few. Membership in the Environment of Care Committee should be drawn from these departments and committees as appropriate. This organizational structure and partnership should provide an opportunity for clear and expedient communication of Environment of Care program requirements and identified issues.

The role of the EOC Committee responsibilities might include:

  • Providing leadership associated with EOC functions.

  • Plan, direct, implement, and improve the organization’s performance of the EOC activities.

  • Identify and interpret the Joint Commission requirements which apply to the EOC.

  • Evaluate and assess existing conditions, operations, and practices to determine the impact of and general compliance with the Joint Commission EOC Standards.

  • Identify and generate improvement opportunities and process change to facilitate the safety, security, and comfort of patients and their social environment.

  • Establish and maintain risk assessment and evaluation criteria to identify the priority of performance improvements and process changes

  • Prioritize new improvement opportunities related to the EOC.

  • Recommend, coordinate and facilitate new performance improvement projects.

  • Evaluate activities of all performance improvement teams related to the EOC.

  • Provide the stimulus, vision, and resources to permit implementation.

  • Routinely report to the hospital departments and committees to communicate progress, resource requirements and planning activities.

EES provides assistance to hospitals in the development of Environmental Management Systems. We have developed detailed templates for all levels of documentation required for EMS, including Policies, Procedures, and Work Instructions. Contact Tom Petersen, P.E. at 215-881-9401 or by email at for a no-cost assessment of your current environmental compliance systems and recommendations for compliance strategies.

HE Number 4 part 1



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