When Reading Hospital embarked on a 476,000-square-foot addition to its West Reading, Pennsylvania, location, the goal was to replace and relocate operating rooms spread across four buildings and provide 150 new private patient rooms. The nine-story tower that opened in October includes five floors of private patient rooms, 24 surgical suites, eight minor procedure rooms, reception and recovery areas and an expanded trauma unit. Most of the new facility features noraplan® eco floor covering with nora nTx.
nora nTx is a pre-applied, solvent-free adhesive backing that minimizes prep work and eliminates drying protocols, saving valuable time and money. The product is resistant to high moisture vapor emissions and has no pH limits, eliminating the need for moisture testing and remediation before installation.
According to Hutwelker, the application of nora nTx provided two advantages during construction. “It did not require a moisture mitigation system, which represents a savings in not only dollars, but also in time—two months in our construction schedule. Secondly, we had one company providing all the warranty for the flooring, which is pretty much unheard of in other projects. One warranty from one supplier is very helpful.”
Others involved in the project pointed to additional advantages nora flooring offers. David Major, the hospital’s director of facilities and construction, says “Maintenance of the product is greatly enhanced. We don’t have to unwax or wax the floors.”
Tim Cole, director of environmental services, agrees. “The floor offers as much as 20 to 30 percent in labor savings related to the care and maintenance of the floor. In addition, from an environmental standpoint, you can clean and maintain the floor with less caustic chemicals and cleaners as opposed to other traditional floor coverings.”
The floor’s simple maintenance regimen is also expected to improve patient throughput. Says Cole, “With nora flooring, we can turn over patient rooms very quickly—probably in half the time it would take to do a floor we have to clean and wax.” And he appreciates the floor’s low-gloss finish, which helps older patients sometimes disoriented by shiny floors.
Meanwhile, Marie Keim, Reading Health System’s director of epidemiology infection and prevention, applauds the floor’s contribution to infection prevention. “The surfaces are smooth; we don’t need to be concerned about residual water, bacteria and other items going into cracks and crevices and harboring any sort of bacteria or organisms. The other positive aspect of the nora flooring is that it resists staining...and the floor makes it much easier to stand throughout our day as we provide services to our patients.”
Comfort underfoot, stain and slip resistance, a simple maintenance regimen, improved indoor air quality and construction time and cost savings—together, these benefits support the hospital’s decision to install nora rubber flooring with nora nTx throughout its new tower.