Active Projects

A refurbishment framework with an emphasis on energy consumption of existing healthcare facilities

Project Facts

Start date: December 2007
End date: June 2011
Investigators Professor Andrew Price; Dr. Jacqueline Glass, Dr, Nebil Achour
Staff Employed Dr. Amey Z. Sheth,
Status Completed

Project Partners

1. NHS Trust- Nottinghamshire
2. Skanska

Project Partners

Department of Civil and Building Engineering
Loughborough University
Ashby Road
LE11 3TU
T: +44 (0) 15 0922 2627

Despite significant investment and advancement in technologies, many existing healthcare facilities are below an acceptable standard when energy and operational performance are considered. Energy efficiency and carbon emissions have become major issues by industry and government global warming. In 2008, existing healthcare facilities were responsible for over £410 million worth of energy consumption and 3.7 million tonnes of CO2 emissions. The UK government imposed two key targets especially for existing healthcare facilities; 55-65 GJ/100m3 energy consumption; and reduce the level of primary energy consumption by 15 per cent (0.15 million tonnes carbon from 2000 level) by 2015. Also, literature suggests that these facilities are energy inefficient and also fail to provide comfortable environment for patients despite significant energy consumption.

This research focused on the evaluation of existing facilities and the associated refurbishment processes and tools. The research findings revealed that refurbishment lacks broad perspective, for example, issues related to mechanical systems, aesthetic considerations and redesigning facilities have never been given a sufficient importance. The primary data collection helped to explore: refurbishment of healthcare facilities; challenges and drivers associated with existing facilities refurbishment; practical approaches; and to identify shortcomings in existing practices related to refurbishment. A Healthcare Energy And Refurbishment (HEAR) framework and decision making process was developed as part of this research to enable healthcare organisations to adopt modern methods for re-designing of existing facilities, and to exploit refurbishment practices with consideration to energy consumption. The framework was validated by demonstrating it to professionals; experts from the industry.

Recent developments in the construction sector, such as BIM, sensors and data driven decision making can help during the refurbishment of healthcare facilities. However, there are many ideas and methodologies proposed for development of new healthcare facilities, but the challenges in using these methodologies, such as BIM, energy simulation for refurbishment of existing healthcare facilities and above mentioned targets provided a base and context for this research. The later phases of the research highlighted a clear need for immediate actions on existing healthcare facilities, if government targets related to energy consumption and overall performance are to be achieved.
Thus, redevelopment of existing healthcare facilities to support the 21st century (modern) technologies to reduce environmental impacts and improved users' satisfaction was considered as priority areas. Thus, modern technologies (interoperable tools) and concepts such as Building Information Modelling (BIM), building simulation, healthy/sustainable facilities, healing environments are major catalysts for a change in overall design practices. To help users identify which tools to use a framework to identify complexity level associated with existing buildings and refurbishment projects was developed along with a matrix to better understand types of tools and support systems to integrate during refurbishment of healthcare facilities.

Keywords: Building Information Modelling, energy, existing healthcare This has resulted in development of several new healthcare facilities.