Building Healthcare

Healthcare Construction e-News

Helping Our Clients Achieve Better Outcomes

Healthcare Regulatory CON-ditions

Michigan has a robust Certificate of Need (CON) program that has been in place since 1978. In 2016 the CON Commission reviewed six of the thirteen covered clinical services to determine what level of regulation was appropriate. 
The Psychiatric Beds & Services workgroup generated notable changes. A provision was approved to create a special population pool that allows for new psychiatric programs and expansion of existing services. Due to the significant statewide mental health crisis, the need for psychiatric beds has grown in almost every community and the regulations were not meeting the patient demand.

In fact, the provider community submitted plans for more growth than originally anticipated, thus the Commission appropriated additional beds into the special population pool. 

2017 will present additional opportunities for providers with the Commission examining:

  • Cardiac Catheterization
  • Hospital Beds
  • Megavoltage Radiation Therapy (MRT) 
  • Open Heart Surgery
  • Positron Emission Tomography (PET) Scanner Services 
  • Surgical Services

Historically, these standards have seen mostly incremental changes. Absent significant provider input many of the services will again result in technical changes to clarify existing language. The Commission will hear testimony this month on these services and implement a work plan in 2017.   

If you would like more information on Michigan’s CON activities, visit the Michigan Department of Health & Human Services for Certificate of Need.

Impossible? We don’t think so.

Clint Hodgson, a Beaumont Hospital Sr. Project Manager is clear when it comes to construction, “Bring in someone with a history of healthcare. Experience counts.” Beaumont Health is an active, bustling healthcare system. With eight hospitals, 168 health centers, nearly 5,000 physicians and 35,000 employees. Beaumont Health serves the community of southeast Michigan and beyond. The Royal Oak campus alone hosts nearly 1,100 beds, a major academic and referral center and a Level I adult trauma center.

With this many people, Beaumont—Royal Oak needed office space while still providing patients award-winning care. But, where could they find it? There was one option. A connector bridge patch between two buildings.

Identifying the space on a nearly two million square-foot campus seemed easy when compared with what they uncovered. The connector was never finished and the concrete was missing from the floor deck of the otherwise finished building.

A mighty feat

You can’t simply carry concrete through the building. You risk splash and safety failures. It seemed the best solution was to pump the concrete up to the site. But consider, how do you pump concrete up six floors, from street-level, around sensitive underground access tunnels, above underground utility structures, near high-traffic car and pedestrian routes, beside three emergency exits, through a finished curtainwall system and window that is two feet by four feet on Saturday of the Woodward Avenue Dream Cruise? You plan. Plan. Plan.

Christman worked with Beaumont’s facilities team to identify risks and strategize solutions. The goal was to look at all scenarios and create an option for each.

  • Place 35 yards of concrete. (Let’s clearly define what that means. A yard weighs 4,000 pounds. A truck weighs 26,000 pounds. This means Beaumont was undertaking the herculean task of moving 140,000 pounds of concrete up a pump to the sixth floor.) Our solution: Use a pedestrian walk designed for fire access to avoid driving over underground access tunnels. Additionally use three-quarter inch steel road plates to protect sensitive traffic control sensors.
  • Three near-by emergency exits remained open. Christman and Beaumont worked together to identify truck access, driving routes and parking to meet all safety requirements. Not once was safety compromised and planning played a huge part in that success.
  • Speed was of the essence to ensure the busy campus could continually accommodate patients, visitors and staff. Through experienced oversight the work began at 5 a.m. and the pour began at 6:30 a.m. A tightly choreographed plan allowed for placement in just two hours. 
  • This particular work task was part of a larger, 13-phase renovation project. When sequencing the work, this pour was scheduled for the Saturday morning of Royal Oak’s Dream Cruise. Located adjacent to the hospital, an estimated 30,000 cars and nearly a million people flooded the area. This put one of the world’s largest auto events in the back yard of the hospital. The facility team managed access and traffic flow. The mobile police response unit for Dream Cruise was in an adjacent parking lot to the hospital. This critical security effort experienced zero issues.

Considerable planning led to a perfectly delivered two hours of work pumping concrete. When reflecting on the experience, Tim Poszywak, Beaumont’s Construction Compliance Fire & Life Safety Manager said, “It’s important to see hazards at the highest level of risk and mitigate problems. This was a good outcome.”


Welcome to Building Healthcare!

On a quarterly basis, click through this executive-style briefing on the latest construction news, technology advancements and best practices. Christman's inaugural edition of Building Healthcare focuses on technology and the “future-is-now” approach to experiencing better build outcomes. 

Click this link to share your story in the next edition. 

Mixed Reality: The Future for Construction Innovation

Imagine working in a world where you could collaborate in meaningful and tangible ways on construction project decisions in real-time, before the first hammer swings. What would be required?

Consider how the typical process works. It is a vision of a client, brought to life by a designer and construction partner. The challenge is that visualizing the project early in the lifecycle can be difficult for the wide variety of stakeholders involved – this gap in a shared understanding can result in impacts to cost, schedule and function.

One new solution is mixed reality.

Today’s available collaboration technology is getting close to the scientific predictions of pop-culture movies and TV. Christman is one of a handful of companies across the country that is piloting new “mixed reality” technology with Microsoft Hololens. This solution blends a physical model with hologram technology.

Using a self-contained head-mounted viewer, any project participant can see (and almost feel what it’s like to be inside) the envisioned structure at the earliest stage of a project.

Collaboration tools like this one offer tangible benefits, including:

  • Improved design coordination through proactive clash detection
  • Compressed scheduling by reducing process times
  • Decreased cost by minimizing late-stage changes

Interested in a demo of this new tool or other collaboration tools available today? Click this link to set one up.

Case Study: Sparrow Ionia Hospital

A recent example of construction collaboration tools in action is Sparrow Health System’s Ionia Critical Access Hospital.

Sparrow set out with the Ionia project to improve ease of patient access. The new hospital features 22 inpatient beds and expanded emergency, surgery and outpatient services. Other elements include all-digital radiology, private patient rooms, enhanced safety and security, as well as a pharmacy, kitchen and cafeteria, laboratory and MRI services.

Early in construction, Building Information Modeling (BIM) enabled the team to perform cloud-based clash detection of the mechanical, electrical and plumbing systems. This attention to MEP coordination allowed the team to work through the process 22 percent faster. Once coordinated, lean construction practices were leveraged, including prefabrication of pipe, conduit and duct to increase labor efficiency while simultaneously improving on-site safety. Throughout the project, Christman worked in collaboration with the Sparrow Health management staff to capture specific data and embed it in the model to improve their facility management processes.

As a result, Sparrow’s asset management software could be fully populated with the new building assets in a matter of minutes at project completion. This commonly takes months or years to complete. The composite 3D model also serves as a very powerful as-built document to improve ongoing maintenance practices.

Click here for more information on this project.