The total refurbishment of two UCV (Ultra Clean Ventilation) operating theatres at Conquest Hospital in St Leonards on Sea, East Sussex, was completed last year, with wiring accessories from Click Scolmore’s growing medical solutions range specified and installed.
Products from Scolmore’s Mode range of white moulded, antimicrobial wiring accessories, and the accompanying GridPro plates and modules range were chosen to provide the solution for this sensitive install project.
Infection control is one of the biggest challenges facing the healthcare sector. Concern regarding cleanliness and healthcare associated infections (HCAI) continues to get headlines in the media, with the result that anyone operating within and supplying to this sector, is required to work with products that meet the demands for hygiene and safety, and that includes electrical products.
Preventing airborne infections during a surgical procedure is of paramount importance for effective and economical delivery of care, as well as for health and well-being of patients. Ultra Clean Ventilation (UCV) systems, such as the ones featured in the Conquest Hospital theatres, are commonly used in operating theatres, in particular for orthopaedic surgery because of the higher risk of infection from exposed deep wounds.
Switch plates, such as light switches, dimmers and sockets have one of the highest touch rates in any environment, so are likely to hold a significant number of microbes on their surfaces. Regular cleaning is essential but not always sufficient. By using products that inhibit bacterial and fungal organisms, it is possible to help prevent the spread of superbugs.
A number of double, unswitched Mode blue medical sockets, red outboard rocker sockets and white outboard rocket sockets have been installed in the walls around the theatre to accommodate the numerous devices and appliances that need to be powered.
In line with the requirements, the blue medical sockets feature laser-etched white lettering stating, ‘Medical Equipment Only’. Blue ‘Medical Equipment Only’ Sockets are designed to distinguish them from non-IPS electrical sockets. This helps ensure medical equipment is plugged into IPS sockets and non-medical equipment is plugged into non-IPS sockets.
Double supplementary equipotential bonding earth connection points were also installed. These products have recently been added to the Click Medical Solutions wiring accessories range, along with EBBs (Equipotential Bonding Busbars). EBBs play a major role in ensuring patient and clinician safety. In accordance with the Requirements for Electrical Installations BS 7671:2018 AMD2 Section 710 (Medical Locations) and the Health Technical Memorandum HTM06 01:2017, all Group 1 and 2 Medical Locations are to have an Equipotential Bonding Busbar (EBB) and associated supplementary protective equipotential bonding installed.
The white moulded Mode wiring accessories specified for this project are manufactured using Urea Formaldehyde, which has similar inherent properties to antimicrobial additives that inhibit the growth of infectious diseases. All products independently tested achieved a 99.99% kill off rate across all four types of the strains of bacteria – MRSA, E-Coli, Salmonella and Klebsiella Pneumonia.
Responsible for specifying the Mode and GridPro products for the hospital theatres unit was Mark Sellens, electrical project manager at electrical contracting firm, Booker & Best Ltd and he worked closely with the project manager for the Trust, John Harratt.
A time-served electrician, with more than 30 years’ experience within the electrical installation industry, Mark commented: “The Mode range really was an obvious choice on a number of levels that were important for this particular project. It is a great quality range and represents very good value, which is essential in helping to meet budget commitments and it comes with a 20 year guarantee which is pretty unique in the industry. It also scored highly from an infection control point of view, with its antimicrobial properties. Plus its smooth profile means there is a reduced risk of germs being harboured.
“The electricians on site were very impressed with the GridPro range used for the lighting controls. They found the yokeless design of the GridPro plates particularly great to work with. Unique to GridPro is the screw attachment feature, which means that no yoke is required for any modules when using 1-4 gang plates – the modules can be simply screwed directly on to the plates. With some products on the market requiring yokes to be purchased as separate components, this will have implications when considering overall costs and labour requirements. So that was another particularly important consideration for this project.”
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