Medical Construction & Design

MAR-APR 2018

Medical Construction & Design (MCD) is the industry's leading source for news and information and reaches all disciplines involved in the healthcare construction and design process.

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34 Medical Construction & Design | M A RCH /A PR IL 2018 | MCDM AG.COM installing epoxy fl oors with integral-coved bases. The epoxy fl oors are durable, easy to clean, sealed for infection control and have a slight give to them. This reduces fatigue and makes them more comfortable for employ- ees who stand all day. As access to natural daylight is valued, hospital kitchens are moving out of basements. A kitchen above ground can have windows installed in produc- tion areas, which brighten the space and the spirit of the crew working there. Wall treatments in hospital kitchens are starting to see vari- ety. Traditionally, kitchen walls were covered with stainless steel sheets. This is expensive, so hospitals are using nylon wall coverings to maintain cleanability where durabil- ity is not required. Nylon wall coverings can come with a print to make the space feel warmer and inviting. In non-production areas, some hospital kitchens are installing sealed plywood on the walls. Advances in the technol- ogy of the heating, ventilation and cooling system in kitchens include intelligent schemes that can learn the patterns of staff members. These computer- controlled systems have been installed to increase individual control and save energy. The technology will use sensors and collect data to understand when and on what settings employees are using the HVAC system. The computer will prepare and replicate the preferred environ- ment for the next day. Room service Room service has been adopted as a patient pleaser and a cost savings. Delivering food that a patient orders creates less waste and more satisfaction. Say good-bye to the hospital kitchen's mechanical belt assembly tray line. A kitchen set up for room service uses steam tables, plate warmers and refrigerated tables with wells for sandwich and sushi fi xings, plus omelet and pizza toppings. Refrigeration units featuring air curtains make chilled items easily acces- sible to staff . Smaller tray carts make delivery to patients fast and accurate. Hot food goes on a hot plate and is delivered hot to the patient. Cold rooms Another trend is a room that allows cold food to be prepared in a cold environment. A cold room is a separate, enclosed space in the kitchen kept at 46 F. This is the optimal tem- perature to mitigate microbial growth in food. The cold room is intended for ready-to-eat food preparation and assem- bly. Staff members wear warm clothing under their kitchen uniforms and use the cold room to prepare menu items such as sushi, sandwiches, salsa, sauces, salads, salad dressings — anything that does not need to be heated before it is served. This keeps food products cold through the lifecycle of their production, which reduces food waste. The cold room will look the same as other prepara- tion areas of the kitchen and will have similar fi nishes. The diff erence is the room will be thermally sealed. As food service polices change, innovations in the way kitchens and cafés operate are obvious next-level develop- ments. Those provoked by the implications of policy changes have the exciting opportunity to develop ideas that create ease, fl exibility, comfort and ulti- mately promote good health. Rebecca Weidler, AIA, NC ARB, is a healthcare planner and project architect at TSA Architects. From top: Outdoor seating at healthcare facilities is a breath of fresh air for diners, providing the perfect atmosphere to enjoy a meal, along with direct access to nature and moments of respite. > Demonstration zones have been installed in cafés so the cooking portion of the meal can be brought into the visible space.

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