R&F Mechanical Services has an impressive pedigree in the healthcare sector and the leading contractor played a prominent role in this complex project at Altnagelvin Hospital that resembled working on an island.
The £2.2m contract to create new day surgery theatres was needed to relieve pressure on the busy hospital and is part of an extensive investment programme by the Western Health and Social Care Trust.
The two additional operating theatres, which have been integrated within the existing Day Case Unit, include two self-contained theatres suites with ancillary accommodation, storage, and staff rest rooms. While this project marked the 20th full theatre installation in the last decade by R&F Mechanical Services, it also offered a unique challenge in terms of access to the new extension. That is because the new building has been created in a former courtyard area that is locked in on four sides by buildings, providing a challenge of how to get materials and personnel onto the site without causing any undue disruption to this live hospital environment.
As a result, a crane was used to deliver all the materials onto the site while staff gained access through the hospital itself. This required a lot of additional planning not usually found on other projects. Ensuring that patients and medical staff were not unduly inconvenienced was a top priority.
As a result, the experience of R&F Mechanical Services on hospital projects proved essential. The company was contracted to deliver the complete mechanical package for the theatres, which comprised a full ventilation provision for each theatre with designated air-handling units and a Laminar flow canopy for the ultra clean theatre.
Work also included all the necessary LPHW and CHW plant and pipework, air conditioning and full domestic services installation in line with the Trust’s water safety management requirements, along with the Building Management System (BMS).
The high quality requirements of installations of this type are intrinsic to the values of the company. R&F Mechanical Services is proud to have delivered this project with Lowry Building & Civil Engineering, which put together a strong contractor team that was well integrated together and with the other key stakeholders.
This partnership approach ensured that potential risks were highlighted early and mitigation measures put in place.
This recent work at Altnagelvin takes the tally of full theatre installations in the last 10 years by R&F Mechanical to 20 theatre suites, including works in Omagh Enhanced Hospital, NW Independent Hospital, Ulster Hospital, Craigavon Area Hospital, and Altnagelvin Area Hospital.
Thermal Insulation MIC Contracts again demonstrated the company’s expertise in the healthcare sector by completing work on the new theatres project at Altnagelvin Hospital.
Having completed a number of projects alongside M&E contractor, R&F Mechanical Services, the two companies again benefited from a close working relationship to plan and implement this work.
At Altnagelvin Hospital, MIC Contracts used BetaPlus Phenolic pipe insulation. This range is supplied with a factory- applied Class O aluminium foil vapour barrier and a chemically- applied bore coating. Each section is cut from a solid block using the latest state-of-the art machinery, ensuring that all circular sections are concentric and precisely matched for thickness.
The projects again showcased the experience of MIC Contracts on large scale commercial projects and the company’s ability to utilise solutions from market-leading manufacturers. In addition to BetaPlus, MIC Contracts also supplies and fits installation systems from manufacturers such as Saint- Gobain Isover, Paroc and Armacell Armaflex.
“We work all across the UK and Ireland, so it was great to be involved in such an important project here in Northern Ireland,” said Jason Carey, MIC Contracts.
“We already have a good working relationship with R&F Mechanical and this ensured that everything ran smoothly on this job.
The specialist HVAC systems for the new theatres at Altnagelvin Hospital were supplied and installed by Whitehouse Engineering Co. Ltd. The company has extensive experience on delivering HVAC systems to the high standards required for the ventilation and air- conditioning within hospital and operating theatre environments, with this project marking another successful partnership between Whitehouse Engineering and M&E contractor, R&F Mechanical Services.
The project involved the supply and installation of air handling units and an Ultra Clean Canopy system along with a significant network of interconnecting ductwork.
The HVAC systems on the project were manufactured and installed to the highest standards with all the ductwork systems and air handling equipment serving the theatres and treatment areas being cleaned internally after installation and prior to commissioning to BESA Standard TR/19.
“The new theatres have been built in a former courtyard with wards on all four sides, so we had to co-ordinate closely with R&F Mechanical and the hospital to ensure we didn’t disrupt patients or staff,” explained Stephen Dawson, Managing Director at Whitehouse Engineering.
“We have a lot of experience in manufacturing, supplying and installing systems that meet ultraclean specifications and are delighted to be able to add another successful healthcare project to our portfolio.”
Whitehouse Engineering Co. Ltd was established in 1968 and has steadily grown its reputation for high-quality workmanship, particularly on specialised construction projects, with the new Omagh Hospital being the latest example of this.
The company operates from a purpose-built 2,230sqm factory in Mallusk which incorporates the latest in sheet metal manufacturing equipment, including its own in-house BIM and CAD/CAM drawing office.
These facilities provide Whitehouse Engineering with the capability and capacity to handle demanding projects in the public, commercial and industrial sectors, including hospitals, schools, banks, pharmaceuticals, food production and retail outlets throughout the island of Ireland. Whitehouse Engineering is also licensed manufacturers and installers of Flameshield fire resisting ductwork.