There’s no time to lose in a healthcare environment. Nonetheless, patients and staff often need to wait until the hospital maintenance team can travel on-site when there is a failure or malfunction in the hospital HVAC system. Your system won’t need urgent maintenance every day, but when it does, a safe and regulation-compliant environment in the OR of a critical surgery could hang in the balance.
Hospital facilities management is both complex and high stakes. When you’re regulating heat and airflow to a dozen or more ORs, patients and doctors are counting on your facilities staff for safety, compliance, comfort, and consistently ideal conditions for sensitive procedures. It’s essential that each room in your facility maintains a stable set point with excellent ACH (air changes per hour) performance and the ability to rapidly adjust as needs change.
Figures from the IFMA show that the average facilities management professional is now 49 years old, with 28 years of experience (including 16 in facilities management). This is older than the median age of the general workforce by 8 years.
Systems for HVAC in healthcare facilities must balance complexity with urgency. A large hospital or other healthcare facilities may include a dozen or more ORs with sensitive temperature and ventilation needs, which may need to change rapidly — perhaps to drop temperatures for a procedure or to cycle in clean air after an aerosolizing event.
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Health facilities management systems are often complex and difficult to set up, navigate, or operate without the expertise of a highly trained technician. Our cloud-based ODIN software is designed to make it easy for anyone to adjust, trend, schedule, and set alarms within even the largest health facilities management systems.
When President Biden signed the American Rescue Plan on March 11, 2021, it launched a $1.9 trillion economic stimulus, including $130 billion in stimulus money for schools in the pre-K through 12th grade age group. The intention of this new school stimulus money—called the Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief (ESSER) Fund—is to help schools safely reopen within 100 days and take actions to help protect students, staff, and families from COVID-19.
The American Rescue Plan, which was signed into law by President Biden in March 2021, has set a priority of reopening as many K-12 schools as possible within its 100 days. As of the writing of this article, we’re a little more than a third of the way through that timeline. Facilities managers are ramping into high gear getting many buildings that have been shut down for a year or more ready for people to resume daily occupancy. Here are a few quick tips to guide your planning process as you start laying out your school building safety and school facilities management strategies.
There’s nothing more important to a K-12 facilities manager than the safety and health of the building’s occupants. The COVID-19 pandemic brought this into even sharper relief and now is the time to act. The U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) found that 54% of public school districts need to improve or replace multiple school building systems—especially HVAC upgrades. Their report estimates that 41% of districts need an update or even replacement of antiquated or inadequate HVAC systems. That adds up to 36,000 schools across the nation.
The Coronavirus Response and Relief Supplemental Appropriations Act (CRRSA) went into effect on December 27, 2020. This 5,600-page, $900B bill included $82B specifically set aside for education. Of that money, $52B will go straight to K-12 schools (about four times as much as the $13.5B allocated by the CARES Act in March of 2020).
There are a lot of myths and misconceptions about indoor air quality (IAQ), so many that even the most experienced of building operators and HVAC technicians may find themselves scratching their heads. This is why, when it comes down to it, the only way to know what indoor air quality control is supposed to look like is to consult with the source.