Epsom and St Helier are investing £20 million into a programme that will transform the hospital environment for patients, slash the amount of energy the Trust uses and reduce the amount of money spent on energy bills by approximately £670,000 per year.
The work will include replacing the six steam boilers that currently power the hospitals (some systems of which date back to the 1930s and require 24/7 maintenance support), new lighting across the hospitals and new heating for the wards and departments.
Trevor Fitzgerald, Director of Estates and Capital Projects at Epsom and St Helier said: “This is the biggest investment ever made into energy efficiency at the Trust, and the improvements we are working on are very exciting. As an organisation that operates 24 hours a day and 365 days a year, we absolutely recognise our duty to protect the environment and use the energy that we rely on as efficiently as possible. We have been caring for people for generations – it’s time that we take extra care of the environment too.
“But this isn’t just about the environment as a whole – this will have a huge impact on our hospital environment too. The work to replace the lighting fixtures has already started and brand new equipment has already been shipped in to St Helier to be installed over the coming months. By the time of project completion ( late 2020 for St Helier, and early 2021 for Epsom), both of our hospitals will have a whole host of new energy saving technologies including brand new hot water boilers, a combined heat and power system and state of the art control systems.
“We have already replaced more than 4000 of our lighting fixtures at St Helier and 2500 at Epsom, with a total of 8000+ fixtures being replaced across both sites upon project completion. The new fixtures use state of the art LEDs to help make our hospital lighter, brighter and more energy efficient.
“And this is just the start of the extensive work we will be doing to improve conditions for our patients – such as installing brand new air handling units in our operating theatres and replacing the air conditioning units serving critical areas of the hospital (such as our Intensive Care Unit).
“We will also be installing a combined heat and power system on our generators, which will generate enough electricity to supply the whole of our hospitals at certain times of the day and allow us to harness the heat produced and put it back into our heating and hot water system.
“This project is a huge undertaking for our Trust, as at St Helier alone we will be replacing three huge 12 tonne steam boilers with brand new, six megawatt, high efficiency, low temperature hot water boilers, with a further three to follow at Epsom. This task poses quite a technical challenge, as the old boilers at St Helier will need to be taken out piece by piece from the basement of the hospital’s D Block (the building which houses the hospital’s pathology department) by taking down walls and using specialist lifting equipment).The replacement works at Epsom are also likely to present their own unique set of challenges. However, once installed, our new boilers will be easier to maintain, cheaper to run and easier for our staff to work with.”