Hospital HVAC Design for Post-Covid Healthcare Industry
The present situation demonstrates the critical role Heating, Ventilation, and Air Conditioning systems play in ensuring the safety of both patients and frontline caregivers and teaches us the essential need of integrating flexibility into future hospitals.
The Hospital Survey and Construction Act
With President Truman’s “Hospital Survey and Construction Act” signed into law after World War II, healthcare construction boomed in the 1950s and 1960s. The Hill-Burton Act of 1975 provided funding for an extra 6,800 facilities.
In both cases, the laws contributed to developing one of the world’s most comprehensive and modern health care systems.
Reinventing the Hospital HVAC Design
The COVID-19 pandemic presents a chance for the architecture, engineering, and construction industry and healthcare executives to reinvent how hospitals are designed in the future.
Several solutions should be considered to develop a robust HVAC system with the capability to adapt to future demands.
Reduce the Risk in Hospital Facilities
To reduce the risk of viruses spreading via hospital HVAC design and systems in the future, experts advocate establishing and maintaining effective particle filtration using HEPA filters.
Also, consider the installation of high-intensity UV lamps or similar air treatment equipment near the cooling coils. They can be efficient in killing a large proportion of virus particles that travel through the AHU, in addition to assisting in keeping coils clean.
When it comes to the construction of unfavorable pressure rooms, pay close attention to detail. Avoid venting return or relief air into mechanical rooms and direct all return air to the outdoors to minimize the danger of infection and enable return fans to be utilized for emergency exhaust.
Additionally, it is critical to communicate with the hospital about the standard or desired ventilator settings.
Diversity is frequently overlooked when designing to accommodate a small number of ventilators, and conservative values have historically been chosen.
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