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Mechanical System in Santagati Center Provides New Level of Safety and Comfort

Much like the engine of a high-end, luxury automobile, the mechanical system that powers the new Santagati Center is built to ensure the best possible performance.

Located on the top floor of the new surgical center in what is called the “Mechanical Penthouse,” the air handling and filtration system that services the seven operating suites and all other areas of the building, features the most advanced technology currently available and provides a new level of safety and comfort for patients and staff. Two energy-efficient power generators were also installed as part of the project, providing backup electricity for the Santagati Center, Emergency Center, and Lamprey and Stevens buildings.

“The mechanical systems are a crucial part of the Santagati Center project and represent a huge leap forward for Lawrence General,” says Cal McMullan, Facilities Management project manager. “Our current mechanical systems have served us well, but they are decades old now and due for an upgrade.”

One key function of the air handling and filtration system is to circulate clean air in the operating rooms, while also controlling the temperature and humidity levels. “The new system replaces the entire volume of air in the operating rooms 30 times per hour, which is a big improvement over our old system and the optimum amount of turnover from an infection control standpoint,” says Al Croteau, senior director of Facilities Management.

Also aiding in infection prevention efforts is the new Huntair Cleansuite air filtration system. Located above the operating table in each surgical suite, the system creates an “air curtain” around the patient by removing airborne particles and contaminants, while at the same time bathing the patient and surgical staff in filtered air. “Lawrence General is one of the few hospitals in the entire country using this new filtration system, which is pretty impressive,” says Al.

The new mechanical systems are all computer-based and fully automated, he adds, giving the facilities team more control over maintaining the building’s air quality and temperature, as well as the ability to make changes remotely.

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