Hospital Construction

Integrated System, From Consulting to Design and Construction, Adds Value to Plans Fukuoka Dental College HospitalMarch 25, 2021

Integrated System, From Consulting to Design and Build Contact, Adds Value to Plans Fukuoka Dental College Medical and Dental Hospital

Building Hospitals Integrated System, From Consulting to Design and Build Contact, Adds Value to Plans Fukuoka Dental College Medical and Dental Hospital March 25, 2021

Hospital construction by Shimizu is characterized by an integrated system for handling the entire process from consulting basic concept through contracting design and build. Shimizu progresses through this process while thinking through the future vision for the hospital with the customer.
The reconstruction of the Fukuoka Dental College Medical and Dental Hospital involved such an integrated system. We made sure that the direction considered in the initial stage carried through the next stage, and added ideas to increase the value of the plan. This resulted in a medical facility that is efficient and facilitates work, and also strengthened management.

Proposing to improve productivity through basic concept consulting

The mission of the Fukuoka Dental College Medical and Dental Hospital is cooperation between medicine and dentistry. It is a comprehensive hospital consisting of four dental clinics, which include 12 specialty clinics, and 23 medical clinics.
Shimizu proposed a practical operating program based on a detailed analysis of actual use to solve the management issues of improving the productivity of the dental clinics, which mainly provide outpatient services, and increasing the number of medical patients.

Shimizu’s hospital construction process: Working to add value to the plan through a series of consultations
Shimizu’s hospital construction process: Working to add value to the plan through a series of consultations

(1)Increasing Chair Unit Operating Efficiency

The first thing Shimizu worked on to increase the operating rate of the dental chair units (hereafter, “chair units”) consisting of a clinic chair for the patient and medical equipment.
In the existing hospital, there were 75 chair units in the large dental clinic rooms and each clinic used the chair units in a defined area. When we investigated that, we found that while some clinics were operating full, units in other clinics were open during specific weekdays or time periods.
In the new hospital, we eliminated the boundaries between clinics and used a “free address” system in which open chair units can be chosen from the large dental clinic rooms. Together with the other measures we implemented, this is expected to improve operational efficiency by the equivalent of 15 chair units.

The first thing Shimizu worked on to increase the operating rate of the dental chair units (hereafter, “chair units”) consisting of a clinic chair for the patient and medical equipment.
In the existing hospital, there were 75 chair units in the large dental clinic rooms and each clinic used the chair units in a defined area. When we investigated that, we found that while some clinics were operating full, units in other clinics were open during specific weekdays or time periods.
In the new hospital, we eliminated the boundaries between clinics and used a “free address” system in which open chair units can be chosen from the large dental clinic rooms. Together with the other measures we implemented, this is expected to improve operational efficiency by the equivalent of 15 chair units.

Trial Calculation of Additional Capacity Based on a Usage Condition Survey of Dental Clinic Chair Units
The diagram shows the usage of 75 chair units in the large dental clinic rooms of the existing hospital in one-hour increments each day. For example, Clinic A operates full all day long on Tuesday, while the units in Clinic B are open. When we performed a trial calculation assuming shared use of the open chair units, we found that an average increase in capacity of 15 units per day can be expected.
Dental clinic chair units
Dental clinic chair units: Low partitions were installed to secure patient privacy while also allowing observation for teaching dental students.

(2)Improving Productivity of Dental Hygienists

Shimizu also organized the environment to dental hygienists to concentrate exclusively on essential tasks and improve productivity.
In the existing hospital, dental hygienists were responsible for cleaning and disinfecting dental instruments and this took away time from assisting with examinations and other essential tasks.
We therefore created a plan to consolidate the scattered workplaces, centralize the washing and disinfection work, and outsource these tasks. This made it possible to accept more patients without increasing the number of personnel.

Shimizu also organized the environment to dental hygienists to concentrate exclusively on essential tasks and improve productivity.
In the existing hospital, dental hygienists were responsible for cleaning and disinfecting dental instruments and this took away time from assisting with examinations and other essential tasks.
We therefore created a plan to consolidate the scattered workplaces, centralize the washing and disinfection work, and outsource these tasks. This made it possible to accept more patients without increasing the number of personnel.

Number of dental hygienists needed to perform work
Diagram showing improvement in healthcare quality and productivity by streamlining work performed by dental hygienists

Creating an Environment That Facilitates Work

One more thing Shimizu worked on to facilitate work was to build connecting corridors in the large dental clinic rooms exclusively for the use of all staff members and dental students. We arranged shelves for exam materials and equipment, workstations, and space for meetings and breaks along these corridors to stimulate communication and improve the quality of training.
We also installed beautiful stained glass in the upper part of the entrance hall to create a peaceful space to welcome patients.

Plan for the dental clinic large exam room on the 3rd floor
Plan for the large dental clinic room on the 3rd floor: We planned the room to clearly separate patient areas and staff areas, and make the room easy to understand and work in.
Workstations and student training space is located along the connecting corridors used by staff.
Workstations and student training space is located along the connecting corridors used by staff.
The three-story atrium in the entrance hall.
The three-story atrium in the entrance hall. Designed as a space that makes it easy for dental clinic patients on the 2nd and 3rd floors to see the medical clinics on the 1st and 2nd floors, this atrium also functions as a means of increasing the number of patients.
Stained glass in the upper part of the entrance calms patients.
Stained glass in the upper part of the entrance calms patients.

State-of-the-art Energy Conservation Measures for a Hospital

The new hospital was also chosen by the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism (MLIT) as a leading project in construction of sustainable buildings and structures in 2018 (pacesetter in reducing CO2 emissions). The plan is to achieve energy savings of 20% in the entire building compared to typical systems by using natural energy, introducing effective energy conservation controls using the latest technology, and other measures.

(1)Effective Use of Natural Energy in the Three-story Atrium

The space in the three-story atrium uses natural wind flow to take in air from outdoors from the atrium and return it through the roof during seasons of the year in which the weather is good. Sensors installed on the roof constantly monitor the outdoor air. The windows are opened to let outdoor air flow through when it is determined to be appropriate, activating a mechanism for shutting off the air conditioning and ventilation systems. This atrium space is open to the large dental clinic rooms on the 2nd and 3rd floors, so it plays an important role in adjusting the flow of outdoor air into the entrance hall and waiting rooms to eliminate the characteristic unpleasant odors from the dental clinic.

The space in the three-story atrium uses natural wind flow to take in air from outdoors from the atrium and return it through the roof during seasons of the year in which the weather is good. Sensors installed on the roof constantly monitor the outdoor air. The windows are opened to let outdoor air flow through when it is determined to be appropriate, activating a mechanism for shutting off the air conditioning and ventilation systems. This atrium space is open to the large dental clinic rooms on the 2nd and 3rd floors, so it plays an important role in adjusting the flow of outdoor air into the entrance hall and waiting rooms to eliminate the characteristic unpleasant odors from the dental clinic.

Cross-sectional diagram of the entrance hall
Cross-sectional diagram of the entrance hall. It promotes use of natural energy in the large spaces.

(2)Verification Using 3D Simulation Technology

We used Shimz DDE, Shimizu’s proprietary computer 3D simulation technology, to verify the area of the vent (window size) in the atrium space to achieve natural air flow while preventing odors from the large dental clinic rooms from reaching the entrance hall. The outdoor air that flows in from the vent on the first floor is returned through the vent in the upper part of the stained glass on the 5th floor. We planned the natural air flow to maintain the temperature in the atrium space at 24°C.

We used Shimz DDE, Shimizu’s proprietary computer 3D simulation technology, to verify the area of the vent (window size) in the atrium space to achieve natural air flow while preventing odors from the large dental clinic rooms from reaching the entrance hall. The outdoor air that flows in from the vent on the first floor is returned through the vent in the upper part of the stained glass on the 5th floor. We planned the natural air flow to maintain the temperature in the atrium space at 24°C.

Results of Verification of Vent Area Using Shimz DDE
Results of Verification of Vent Area Using Shimz DDE

(3)Achieving Effective Energy Conservation with Multifunctional Image Sensors

We installed multifunctional image sensors in the large dental clinic rooms. The sensors, which are spaced at fixed intervals above the chair units, use image analysis to detect the presence or absence of people and whether they are stationary or walking. Air conditioning, ventilation, and lighting can be finely controlled. They are regulated at a comfortable level when people are present in the booths, and the system switches to energy-saving operation when no one is present or they are only passing through.

We installed multifunctional image sensors in the large dental clinic rooms. The sensors, which are spaced at fixed intervals above the chair units, use image analysis to detect the presence or absence of people and whether they are stationary or walking. Air conditioning, ventilation, and lighting can be finely controlled. They are regulated at a comfortable level when people are present in the booths, and the system switches to energy-saving operation when no one is present or they are only passing through.

Multifunctional sensors that can determine the status of various activities
Multifunctional sensors that can determine the status of various activities
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Workstyle Reform and Strengthening Management Can Be Achieved for Clients Because of the Integrated System of Shimizu

Hospital reconstruction provides a major opportunity to upgrade both the operations and building that existed up to that point, and achieve workstyle reform and strengthening management. Integrating the whole process from the basic concept to design and construction is important precisely because of this.
Shimizu will continue to actively provide total support through an integrated system to all kinds of hospitals.

From the customer

Sachiyo SUITA, Chairperson, Board of Trustess Educational Institution FUKUOKA GAKUEN

We wanted to strengthen management when building the new hospital, so we asked Shimizu Corporation to handle the entire process, from consulting to construction. The reason why we chose one company is that this made it possible for the ideas in one stage to be fully communicated to the next stage, and add depth through the accumulation of ideas. The visualization of dental clinic chair unit usage status by Shimizu provided the evidence for the decision to switch to a “free address” system in the large dental clinic rooms to improve operational efficiency. That idea was accurately reflected in the plan. The addition of an operating program perfected the hospital as a practical, comfortable space that facilitates work.
The hospital was completed on schedule despite the COVID-19 pandemic, and that was also the result of receiving integrated support through operational consulting, including support for the opening.

Sachiyo SUITA, Chairperson, Board of Trustess Educational Institution FUKUOKA GAKUEN

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