Alternative to LST (low surface temperature) Radiators
At a Glance:
- Improved infection control – simply wipe clean when mopping the floors
- No deep clean teams – no heavy covers to remove and no thoroughfare obstructions
- Improved safety – no hard edges or bulky covers, reducing fall and trip hazards
- Increased useable space – all walls free, enabling versatile room layouts
- Simple to install – new build or retrofit
- Reduced running costs – not only cleaning and maintenance, but energy saving too
- Anti-ligature – completely sealed to protect those who might self harm
- All around room heating – feels like underfloor but without the slow response
- Can be colour coordinated to match the room or to provide a visual marker
- No convection currents carrying dust – ideal for asthma and other respiratory illnesses
Infection Control and Health & Safety are two major concerns in the Health & Care Service; ThermaSkirt addresses these 2 main concerns far better than the current norm of LST radiators.
(Source: House of Commons Public Accounts
- At any one time 15% of patients have an HAI
- Patients contracting a HAI spend nearly 3 times longer in hospital
- The estimated additional cost to the NHS is more than £1 Billion each year
- There are almost 300,000 HAI’s each year in England
- Nearly 9,000 deaths attributed to MRSA and other “Superbugs” in 2007
- Cleaning wards in 2004 cost Hospital Trusts over £522 Million
Committee – Reducing Healthcare Associated
Infection in Hospitals in England – November 2009)
Until recently, LST (low surface temperature) radiators have been widely used in Healthcare, as they provide a simple heating system and are a well understood technology. With the recent drive to eradicate HAI’s (healthcare acquired infections) they have now been de-selected on any new NHS projects, as they are practically impossible to keep clean.
It has been found that the convection currents they create draw in the microbiological infections from the floors, and into the radiator covers where they may hibernate in the dust and detritus already inside. At some point, when the radiators are turned on it can be shown that these same infections such as C.Difficile and MRSA are then expelled in the warm air from the radiators, and carried around the heated space, leading to their spread.
With the recent rise in the awareness of so called ‘Superbugs’ such as MRSA and E.coli, C.Diff & MRSA, the problem of Healthcare Acquired Infection (HAI) has never been more acute.
The risk of bacteria cross-contamination and contracting an infection is particularly high in the healthcare sector, where there are a large number of people with reduced immunity levels, in close proximity and an abundance of bacteria and infections.
Obvious ways of passing on infection are direct contact with contaminated surfaces or via proximity and/or airborne communication.
The Association of Healthcare Cleaning Professionals (AHCP), recommend that radiators & covers should be thoroughly cleaned and disinfected at least once a week, which led to the development of LST radiator covers that drop down and radiators that hinged in order to effect a deep clean.
Practically though, this was impossible to achieve, as an average city hospital has around 800 radiators and the weight and size of the covers and water-filled radiators meant that only a well-trained army of physically fit cleaners could ever hope to meet that target.