HEALTHCARE CONSTRUCTION
Health & Fitness

Healthcare Construction: An Overview of Challenges and Potential Solutions

Healthcare construction is one of the most demanding and challenging undertakings in the building sector. Subject to ever-changing standards and codes, healthcare building requires sober and experienced minds coordinated together to meet deadlines and demands. It, therefore, becomes necessary to examine the potential challenges affecting healthcare construction and how construction companies can mitigate them for timely completion and satisfaction.

  1. Demand for Future Renovations

The world population is ever rising, and this calls for the construction of more healthcare centers. Nevertheless, future developments may require hospitals to remodel and expand to accommodate newer but complicated systems, equipment, and more patients. Contractors must plan to meet today’s as well as tomorrow’s demands.

Solution

Contractors should consult with stakeholders to analyze the future demands for healthcare buildings. The forecasting can be achieved by looking at the competitors’ plans for the future, surging medical practices, predictions of hospital services, population trend, and potential building code changes in the future.

 Additionally, incorporating unfinished spaces and adaptable rooms in a healthcare building allows for future expansion and conversions to accommodate growth. Contractors should ensure that whatever they are building now would remain relevant in the future.

  1. Limited Construction Funding

With the demand for sophisticated healthcare centers increasing, hospital management is finding it hard to fund the necessary construction improvements required in the construction of buildings. Also, capital resources are increasingly becoming limited.

Solution

Hospitals need to weigh the total construction cost against the stipulated budget and opt for facility designs and construction methods geared to reduce or optimize costs. Comparing the services and prices of various proven contractors is highly recommendable.

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Secondly, there is a need for hospital or construction management to work with financial consultants to decide on the type of capital most appropriate for the construction and the best time to undertake the building phase. This way, hospitals can mitigate potentially high costs of funding. Additionally, 3-D modeling allows for early correction of errors and prevents costly future changes.

  1. Maintaining Building Standards

As mentioned earlier, building codes are ever-changing, or new ones are being introduced every other day. This brings in a challenge to healthcare construction as buildings should meet the stipulated requirements to get approved for medical applications. Failure to comply with this obligation compromises the building’s safety and puts patients’ and staff’s lives at risk.

Solution

Healthcare construction is indeed a highly specialized project and it is necessary to involve certified healthcare facility managers and healthcare contractors who will guide everyone involved in the project on the best practices, regulatory mandates, and accepted guidelines. Third-party inspection is paramount to ensure that the construction progresses as per the standards.

  1. Completion Delays

It is becoming harder and harder for healthcare constructions to meet deadlines partly due to materials used and practices employed. Such delays ruin the reputation of contractors besides leaving clients dissatisfied. Unmet deadlines have also led to standoffs between clients and constructors.

Solution

It is time for contractors to start investing in reliable products and time-saving techniques in healthcare construction. For instance, the use of rapid-dry cement (guaranteed to dry within 43 days) has been shown to effectively eliminate time-consuming and expensive moisture mitigation methods applied to conventional cement. Additionally, the prefabrication of building components has the potential of reducing construction time by half.

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Bottom-line

Healthcare construction, like any other sector, has its share of challenges, but the good thing is that there are practical solutions to the issues. Through collaboration with stakeholders, contractors can employ the strategies discussed above to counter off-schedules, meet future needs, comply with the statutory standards and codes as well as optimize the cost of construction.

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