Health and Business Issues
More than money is at stake when a hospital’s equipment or systems break down. Think of the consequences should a failure occur in the middle of a surgical procedure. The health risk to the patient. The possible shutdown of the emergency room. Elective surgeries postponed or moved to competing hospitals. In-house patients transferred to those other facilities. Potential litigation and the resulting blow to the hospital’s reputation and future business.
HVAC Systems are Critical
A key system that should not be overlooked in the surgical suite is heating, ventilation and air conditioning. Proper HVAC air flow can help protect patients from infection and therefore reduce the risks of costly litigation and business interruption. Hospital engineers today should be concerned about more than a comfortable temperature. Air quality is essential to the health of patients and the financial well-being of the entire hospital.
Air flow into the surgical suite and removal of air through the exhaust vents remove airborne microorganisms to help control infection. Hospitals that have only one air handler providing air flow to the entire surgical suite risk a shutdown and loss of revenue in the event of failure. Two or more means of providing air are recommended. A preventative maintenance program with regular inspection and maintenance is absolutely essential.