Overcoming Challenges in Healthcare Construction: A Project at University of Maryland Medical CenterCourtney
In the dynamic world of healthcare construction, challenges are a fundamental part of the job. A prime example of resilience and teamwork is the recent 8,769-square-foot fit-out project at the University of Maryland Medical Center Midtown campus. This project involved converting shell space on the 10th floor into a cutting-edge outpatient center. Let’s explore how JBC, with the support of dedicated subcontractors and the enthusiastic engagement of the hospital president, successfully navigated this venture.
The project was ambitious, creating 28 exam and hybrid rooms, support consult rooms, a patient waiting room and check-in space, offices, nurse work areas, medical storage, a staff lounge, and positive and negative pressure rooms. However, the unexpected onset of the COVID-19 pandemic added complexity. Initially, the end-user was hesitant to approve on-site work due to health and safety concerns, leading JBC and subcontractors to diligently assess on-site conditions. Adapting to changing requests from the end-user was a recurring theme, and our dedicated subcontractors played a crucial role in overcoming the challenges.
Initially, the absence of an accessible freight elevator and the inability to use a lift for material delivery required transportation of materials through patient elevators, necessitating modifications to the elevator cab, protection of existing conditions, and coordination with hospital personnel to minimize disruption. Safety remained a top priority throughout the project, with innovative Infection Control Risk Assessment (ICRA) plans developed to allow site access and installation of finishes. Drilling 48 core holes for plumbing work required meticulous coordination to minimize impact on the fully built-out 9th floor. Ceiling coordination was an ongoing challenge due to the various elements competing for space. Effective communication and coordination minimized delays and rework, keeping the project on track and within budget. One standout aspect was the active involvement of the hospital president, Ms. Alison Brown. Her commitment to the project’s success set a tone of collaboration and teamwork, evident through her presence on-site and heartfelt appreciation at the project’s completion.
In conclusion, the fit-out project at the University of Maryland Medical Center Midtown campus demonstrates the resilience, adaptability, and collaborative spirit of all involved. Overcoming challenges in healthcare construction demands dedication, effective communication, and visionary leadership like that of Ms. Alison Brown, transforming a vision into a vital healthcare resource for the community.