Hospitals are facing a challenge during the corona crisis: Cocoon advises on how to make spaces airtight

When the severity of the coronavirus became evident in early 2020, the government was advised to increase the care capacity. One had to prepare for a rapid and sharp increase in corona patients on ICUs. At that time, the ICU capacity was greatly increased as an emergency measure. Among other things, by converting OR capacity and recovery rooms into additional ICU capacity. Care provision to corona patients was a priority. 

In addition to caring for corona patients, other patients also require care and operations. There are at least 700,000 cases of delayed care. It has been decided by the Dutch government and healthcare institutions that this should never happen again. Regular care must be able to continue at all times. 

Now that the measures to prevent the further spread of the coronavirus have been gradually relaxed, the question is whether a second wave of corona infections will break out. And when that second wave arrives, the question is also when it will come and how heavy it will be.

Are the hospitals ready to deal with a second wave of corona infections? Should healthcare prepare for this and how can they best tackle this? Cocoon Holland brainstorms on a solution. 

What challenge are hospitals facing now?

Hospitals are currently facing a major challenge. They must prepare for a second corona wave, which means that there must be a greater ICU capacity for regular care and for the expected corona patients. In addition to expanding this capacity, they must also find and train the necessary personnel. 

It has been determined that before September 1st there should be an increase of 1150 ICU beds to a total of 1700 ICU beds. This technical adjustment will be quite a challenge, but it is feasible. 

Creating extra ICU capacity

How do you turn an ‘ordinary’ room into an ICU room?

On a technical level, many things have to be considered. Think of IT cabling, air ducts and various installation pipes. Rooms must be able to be properly disinfected so that they are completely hygienic for the next patient. In addition, these special areas must be able to be kept at a certain air pressure to prevent contamination. This applies to the possible contamination from the outside to the patient and vice versa. Making this chamber airtight, including the lock, is crucial.

In short, a lot of customization is required when hospital spaces suddenly get a different designation. 

Cocoon advises hospitals and thinks along

One of the technical issues is: ‘How are existing spaces made airtight, including structural changes? And how is this guaranteed for the long term?’ Due to surface tension between the different materials, small (shrink) sheds can eventually develop. Can the chosen solution withstand these changes and also be properly cleaned? 

Because every hospital is set up differently, there is no standard method that applies to every hospital. 

Since 1974, Cocoon has been supplying solutions for airtight spaces for hospitals, laboratories and cleanrooms. Some examples are: The Maasstad hospital where Cocoon has made 18 lock rooms airtight. A number of ML III labs including those in the O|2 building in Amsterdam. In addition, we have carried out similar activities in the Emma children’s hospital and the Slingerland Hospital. 

We have a lot of experience with the (transformation) of high-quality spaces by means of wall and ceiling finishing in combination with our airtight seam and transit sealing. The Cocoon system is a seamless, elastic, pore-free and airtight finish on the walls and ceilings that can permanently bridge the natural effect of the substrate. In addition to these unique properties, the Cocoon system has a very long service life. In short, Cocoon is a quality solution. 

We are able to think along in a professional and solution-oriented way with the challenges that hospitals are currently facing. Together we can look for a suitable customized solution that meets all possible requirements. 

Contact us for service-oriented advice.