A strong Sabre contingent was on hand to celebrate the completion of the Transplant ICU Wing at the Dell Seton Medical Center at The University of Texas (DSMCUT). The teaching hospital held an open house on Friday, May 3rd to commemorate the opening of the new high-profile unit.
Sabre’s finish out of the occupied Transplant ICU Wing added 15 much-needed beds for patients recovering from transplant operations. It was our most recent project for the DSMCUT, which serves as an anchor for the newest healthcare zone in downtown Austin.
“Our team hit our milestones, finished early, and were under budget,” said Project Manager Dan Bradley proudly. “I know the hospital administration is really happy with Superintendent Brad Hatton, Assistant Superintendent Lance Hipps, and Project Engineer Allyssa Taylor. They did a fantastic job keeping administrators and department heads apprised of what was on schedule so conflicts could be avoided.”
Because transplant patients are particularly vulnerable, special protocols were implemented. Since the new patient beds sit in quasi-isolation rooms, constant positive air pressure had to be maintained in each room relative to the corridor area pressure. Part of the mechanical design of the project ensures that air flows out of the room but does not enter it, helping to further protect patients from infections.
Standard Infection control, dust control, and the logistics of getting materials to the floor were also key in the occupied unit, according to Dan, who noted it was critical to work with subcontractors with hospital experience. The experienced trades understood that vigilance in these areas was paramount, and that whatever came into the space had to be covered, keeping contagions from outside the hospital from getting inside. Other challenges were more typical of a hospital job.
“Everything’s hard to get to in a hospital because of everything that happens above ceiling,” explains Dan. “You’re putting a number of key components in a small space, so it’s all got to be coordinated in a systematic way. Brad and Lance did an excellent job of administrating that in the field.”
The team conducted weekly Owner-Architect-Contractor meetings that included a plethora of hospital stakeholders, each involved in coordinating their own particular aspects of the project.
“Ultimately, although we held the largest share of the pie in terms of manpower and materials, there were others that work for the hospital, such as medical or IT equipment vendors, who also needed to integrate their parts into the active hospital system,” said Dan.
“Coordination often comes down to product delivery timing—if delivered too early we have to stage materials and work around them and if delivered too late then the project’s late. Brad and Lance did a fantastic job maintaining the schedule on a weekly basis so we could adjust to changes in environment that could affect delivery dates.
“It was an honor to complete this critical project for the teaching hospital. The Seton leadership team were very pleased about how we organized the work, and how we coordinated and worked with their other vendors. Ownership even said ‘I want this exact team again.’ It was an important project that worked out well, very well.”
View more about the project here.