The Infectious Disease Service provides total isolation accommodation for patients with highly infectious diseases such as malaria, tuberculosis, viral haemorrhagic fever or chicken-pox. It also caters for people (having infectious disease) returning from abroad. The ward currently has six negative pressure isolation rooms, one of which is a medium risk isolation facility.
Negative pressure between two rooms is a process used to prevent cross-contamination from room to room. It includes a ventilation system that generates negative pressure to allow air to flow into the isolation room but not escape from the room, as air will naturally flow from areas with higher pressure to areas with lower pressure, thereby preventing contaminated air from escaping the room.
Work was completed on a phased basis, ensuring the continuous functioning of the ward.
All demolition works were completed with health and safety measures in place, to prevent any disruption to staff and patients. New internal walls and doors were erected; new secondary glazing, wall, floor and ceiling finishes including the formation of en-suite bathrooms with all associated mechanical and electrical services. All work zones were fully sealed (airtight) and subject to pressure tests. Finishes were of a standard that provided a constant hygienic environment, whilst maintaining the comfort of any long stay patients.
There are a considerable number of hazards encountered when working in an infectious disease environment. Factors such as cross contamination, dust and debris, noise and vibration, aspergillus, must be taken into consideration when drawing up the Health and Safety Plan. Full compliance with procedures and protocols set down by estate management was vital, to ensure the safety of the patients and prevent any adverse affects on their health.
The management of this project was undertaken by a company director, in partnership with the design team and estate management. This enabled the contract to be safely completed within programme and on budget.