Taking the Mystery Out of Health Care Electrical Installations

Whether it’s a small doctor’s office or a massive hospital, the standards for health care facility electrical systems are much more stringent than those for other commercial or industrial buildings. Even if the electrical equipment isn’t directly related to patient care or safe building operations, it’s still held to a higher standard by the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA).

This post will cover everything you need to know about the electrical requirements for medical technology centers.

The two components of health care electrical systems

Health care electrical systems consist of two parts: the essential electrical system (EES) and the non-essential electrical system (also known as the normal electrical system). The non-essential loads include general lighting, general lab equipment and non-critical service equipment. These loads don’t have to be fed from an alternate power source, per the NFPA.

Although the requirements vary, an EES is just what it sounds like—a system that must continually operate to ensure proper patient care and staff and visitor safety.

EES risk categories

There are four risk categories related to the failure of EES medical facility wiring. Category 1, for example, means failure of the system would lead to major injury or death of patients or caregivers. On the opposite end of the spectrum, category-4 failure wouldn’t impact patient care at all.

Risk categories 1 and 2, which are related to patient deaths or injuries, require the space to be served by an EES system. Examples of these areas include critical care and general care areas. A waiting room or basic examination space are areas where EES wouldn’t be required.

Sources of electrical power

EES systems must have at least two independent power sources. There must be a traditional source to power the entire facility and a secondary source that will supply power when normal service is interrupted.

The on-site generator must provide medical technology centers with several different branches of power: the life safety branch, critical branch and equipment branch. The life safety branch includes things like exit signs, while the critical branch powers blood banks and critical care areas, among many other things. The equipment branch can include everything from elevators to devices used in surgeries.

Is your facility ready for a power outage?

Emergencies happen when you least expect them, and now is the season for heavy storms. If your facility isn’t currently up to NFPA standards or you’re worried that you might be in trouble if there’s a power outage, then call our pros at Box Electric Company. Our competitive pricing and wide range of services make us the go-to company for your facility.

We specialize in updating medical facility wiring to better protect patients while keeping our customers in good standing with the authorities. Additionally, our professionals are experts in all things related to medical facility technologies—we’re your one-stop shop for ensuring patient and staff satisfaction.

Get in touch with our team today to upgrade your electrical system or to learn more about all of our technological and electrical services.