How does Energy Efficiency beneficial for healthcare?
Each year, hospitals spend hundreds of amount of Rupees on electricity bill for each bed. It makes sense that many hospitals would want to reduce energy cost use given their high operational costs. It requires ability and coordination to efficiently use energy in hospitals, but the benefits of energy cost reduction can be financial savings and even aid in the recovery process for patients.
What are the common problems healthcare industries face?
The healthcare sector is intricate. Hospitals have special requirements as they work to save lives. It can be difficult to get a healthcare institution working properly, despite the fact that it requires a lot more energy than most other industries. It is difficult to run a hospital with energy-efficient operations due to a number of reasons, such as:
- Operating 365 days
Patients require care around-the-clock, and life-saving machinery requires a consistent power source. Although the use of most buildings can be reduced after business hours to increase energy efficiency, healthcare facilities do not have an after-hours period.
A 24-hour operation may also postpone technological advancements. Any maintenance on the building’s Energy Management Systems must be carefully planned to avoid disrupting routine operations or taking place in a patient’s room. Even in an empty patient or care room, work must be scheduled in conjunction with staff and facility managers.
- Safety & Health Concerns
Hospital facility managers and energy partners must be acutely conscious of the sensitive environment while launching energy reduction efforts. Every initiative must put the health and safety of patients, employees, visitors, and other people first. Energy efficiency initiatives may take more time and money to complete due to the extra safeguards that must be taken.
New energy initiatives may be delayed by safety concerns related to contamination. Finding offices and storage spaces requires creativity on the part of energy contractors. In order to avoid affecting patient care, they must collaborate closely with personnel. To keep patients safe, energy consultants must collaborate with an institution’s infection control division. Making ensuring the squad has had flu vaccinations and has been fully immunized is a regular practice.
Another important issue is the state of the air. Partitions may be used to divide areas where work is in progress in construction projects, and containment carts are required to collect dust while in use. Employees must also take care not to impede access to important places or equipment. Long after a project is finished, lighting can still directly affect safety. During various hours of the day and night, hospital employees and patients commute between the hospital and their vehicles. No matter what time of day, the facility must have adequate illumination so that everyone feels secure entering and leaving.
- Facilities Expansion over Time
A lot of reputable hospitals have an improvised design. New wings extend from the primary building as facilities grow. When this occurs, the energy infrastructure in the newer areas differs from that in the older areas.
Lighting and HVAC systems in older areas may be outdated and inefficient. Newer areas of the building may have better insulation and layouts designed to reduce energy consumption, whereas older areas may be less efficient.
When a building’s energy framework is disjointed, it can be more difficult to get it to run at peak efficiency. When new sections are linked to older ones, they may share the same HVAC system, for example. Taking full advantage of the energy-efficient features of newer wings may necessitate updating older spaces as well, raising renovation costs.
- Rising Energy Costs
Every business is concerned about the rising cost of energy. Energy prices fluctuate as a result of market conditions. Hospitals have sophisticated structures, high product procurement rates, and high transportation costs. Because of these factors, the healthcare industry is more vulnerable to increases in energy costs. They also make reducing resource reliance a top priority for hospital facility managers.
Benefits of Energy Efficiency for healthcare industries?
- Cost savings: Healthcare facilities consume a significant amount of energy, which can result in high electricity bills. By implementing energy-efficient practices, such as using LED lighting and upgrading to energy-efficient HVAC systems, healthcare facilities can reduce their energy consumption and save money on their utility bills. These cost savings can be redirected towards patient care and facility improvements.
- Improved patient comfort: Energy-efficient HVAC systems can improve patient comfort by providing consistent temperature and humidity levels. This can help patients recover more quickly and can also reduce the risk of hospital-acquired infections.
- Reduced environmental impact: Energy-efficient practices can reduce greenhouse gas emissions and other pollutants associated with energy production. This can improve the health of the community and reduce the environmental impact of healthcare facilities.
- Improved reputation: Patients and their families are increasingly concerned about the environmental impact of healthcare facilities. By implementing energy-efficient practices, healthcare facilities can demonstrate their commitment to sustainability and improve their reputation in the community.
- Regulatory compliance: Healthcare facilities are subject to numerous regulations related to energy use and environmental impact. By implementing energy-efficient practices, healthcare facilities can ensure compliance with these regulations and avoid fines and penalties.
- Make Low-Risk Investments
Energy efficiency investments with low risk can reduce operating costs. Upgrades to energy-efficient technology typically have a short payback period. While they may be more expensive at first, they result in measurable energy cost savings over time. Here are some energy-efficiency investments that will pay for themselves in the long run:
- High-efficiency HVAC systems:
Heating, ventilation, and air conditioning all consume a lot of energy. They are among the most significant costs associated with commercial energy use, and the healthcare industry is no exception. In such a delicate environment, it may not always be possible to reduce the heat or AC to save money. Instead, hospitals should think about investing in energy-saving systems. Heating and cooling units with the ENERGY STAR label will run more efficiently, saving you money in the long run.
- Advanced lighting control systems:
LED lighting in hospitals has numerous advantages. A smart lighting system enables a healthcare facility to reduce the number of hours of lighting operation and the intensity of the lighting. According to a study conducted by the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, lighting control systems save between 24 and 38 percent of energy.
- Energy consultant services:
One of the most effective ways to increase efficiency is through energy planning. An energy audit and Energy Management Solution can help you identify areas for improvement and make the most of your technology. An Energy Management Consultant can help you reduce energy costs over time by performing an energy audit, designing energy-efficient facility improvements, installing new technologies, developing an energy management system, and more.
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