Siemens helps Taiwan hospital go 'platinum' green

Siemens helps Taiwan hospital go 'platinum' green

The trend of going green has taken hold in various vertical markets, including healthcare. To provide quality treatment to patients as well as a clean and pleasant healthcare environment, Chang Gung Memorial Hospital (CGMH), in the suburbs of Taipei City, has introduced the green building concept to its Proton & Radiation Therapy Center (PRTC), with Siemens serving as the green building consultant.

Planned and designed by CGMH’s facility team, the PRTC, inaugurated in November 2015, received the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design - Healthcare (LEED-HC) Platinum recognition, thereby becoming Asia’s first and the world’s second hospital with this honor.

“Siemens is honored to be designated as the general consultant throughout the entire LEED application and implementation processes. We equipped PRTC with our building management system to make the building’s operation more intelligent and energy efficient,” said Erdal Elver, President and CEO of Siemens Taiwan.

“We are proud to set a new milestone in the green healthcare development, as well as providing far-reaching benefits to Taiwan in terms of energy efficiency, carbon reduction, and environmental sustainability.”

In order to comply with LEED-HC, the therapy center includes various green features including:

  • Heat-resistance: The energy-saving low-E double-layer glass is used for all external windows, and heat-resistant layers are added to the inside of the wall.
  • Air-conditioning and energy consumption control: An intelligent integrated system is installed in order to control the distribution and transmission of energy, enhancing the operational efficiency of the chillers, ice storage systems, low pollution coolants, cool-heat-exchangers, and heat pump systems.
  • Lighting design: Two-way lighting control systems are adopted with automatic on-off functions. The number of lamps is reduced to allow more natural lighting and avoid excessive indirect lighting.
  • Renewable energy: Solar panels and wind turbines are used for renewable energy generation.
  • Waste recycling and reuse: Around 98 percent of CGMH PRTC’s construction waste was recycled.
  • Green materials for construction: Most of the building materials are made from recycled/reused materials with low dissipation, formaldehyde-free, and non-toxic characteristics.
  • Environment protection: Half of the CGMH PRTC building site is covered with plants and roof gardens. Carpool and hybrid cars are highly encouraged.

The therapy center was opened amid calls for making hospitals greener and more environmental-friendly. This is especially the case in Europe and North America. In Asia, Elver acknowledged that spending more money on the hospital’s environmental features still makes healthcare operators hesitant.

But in the end, Elver cited the need for a mindset change, asking healthcare professionals to look at the benefits that can help hospitals save even more in the long term. CGMH, for example, invested nearly $160 million to build PRTC. But it is now 42 percent more energy efficient than regular buildings. Every year, PRTC saves 2 million kilowatt hours of electricity consumption and reduces 1,224 metric tons of carbon dioxide emissions. In addition, the waste water recycling and reclaimed water system reduce water consumption by 61 percent, or 18,750 tons of water annually.

“It’s one of our jobs to talk about long-term consideration, lifecycle cost, and many other aspects,” Elver said. “You might invest more in the building in the beginning, but you’ll save over the lifetime. This is something that we have to keep telling, and this is also somehow linked to the mindset change.”

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