We use cookies to improve your experience. By continuing to use our website, you agree to our privacy policy.

Critical Environments: Ensuring healthcare facilities operate without disruption

Critical environments
26 October 2020

Maintenance of a healthcare facility differs from almost all other types of buildings. In a healthcare setting, areas classified as critical environments are those that play a crucial role in the wellbeing of patients, staff and visitors – such as operating theatres, plant rooms and generators – and the standard of maintenance is of utmost importance.

BGIS has significant experience, scale and reach in this area. The organisation looks after more than 300 critical environments globally, including four hospitals in Australia and seven in North America, with responsibilities encompassing integrated facilities services, design, construction, operation and management – even the best designed and built facility will need initial commissioning and constant monitoring to ensure peak performance through its lifecycle. The team of experts include critical facility managers, mechanical and electrical specialists, operating technicians, energy engineers, and operations consultants, with first-hand knowledge of critical infrastructure and how to manage technical and operational risks of large, sensitive domains.

A hospital relies on electricity not only for operations such as lighting, security systems, fire alarm and egress systems, electronic health records, and Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning (HVAC), but also for power-dependent medical equipment and devices to provide care, such as ventilators, dialysis machines and refrigerators required for the proper preservation of drugs, vaccines or blood. A power outage or surge may result not only in equipment failure, but also temperature variations or ventilation issues that could carry serious consequences for the control of airborne pathogens.

“Critical environments within healthcare facilities are unique and complex, and we understand the need to bring together people, processes and technology to deliver reliability and optimum facility performance that ensures patient, staff and visitor safety and well-being,” explained Nic Blackwood, BGIS APAC’s Regional Head of Critical Environments. “BGIS ensures 24/7 functionality through standardised best-practice processes for management of critical and technical infrastructure, rigorous compliance and safety methodologies, and world-class preventative maintenance schedules that ensure the properties are fit for purpose, all while bringing smart property solutions and operational cost efficiencies.”

Sustainability is a core tenet of BGIS’ mission, and the organisation is committed to implementing technologies and programs that promote environmental awareness and drive significant operational cost reductions for clients. “In a healthcare setting, sustainability initiatives must be balanced to ensure quality of care for patients is never compromised,” said Nic. “At Casey Hospital in Australia where BGIS provides facilities management services, this been achieved by focussing on equipment upgrades to improve energy efficiency, including new gas boilers, replacing old chillers with high efficiency, oil-free Smardt chillers, and completing a site-wide LED lighting upgrade program.”

“Critical environments in healthcare are a unique example, in that the implementation of standardised operations to ensure continuity and up-time enables hospital staff to focus on patient care without holding concerns for infrastructure and building failures,” said Nic. “BGIS provides the full range of integrated facilities management to our hospital clients, which they rely on to ensure their facilities operate without disruption.”

Nic Blackwood, Regional Head of Critical Environments – BGIS APAC
Cloe Maxwell, Communications Manager – BGIS APAC