A backup power supply for healthcare facilities is essential in the event of an emergency. However, Consumer Reports states this isn’t always the case. In 2012, Hurricane Sandy forced an estimated 1000 people in New York and New Jersey to be evacuated to different healthcare institutions when hospitals’ emergency power supply systems failed. In 2005, approximately 215 hospital and nursing home patients died after Hurricane Katrina partly due to generators failing to work in healthcare institutions.
To prevent loss of life and ensure the electricity stays on during a blackout or other type of power outage, having an emergency power supply for healthcare facilities is crucial to ensure the health and safety of everyone.
Causes for Disruption in a Hospital Power Supply
A steady power supply is non-negotiable in healthcare facilities like hospitals. A power outage affects everything from surgical equipment, ventilators, respirators, testing equipment, to the heating and cooling system. Electronic patient data can also be lost when the power supply is disrupted. New patients may be unable to register.
Power outages can be caused by blackouts, brownouts, power surges and spikes. Depending on the type of power outage, medical equipment can even be damaged.
Backup Power Supply Options for Healthcare
There are two types of backup power supplies for healthcare facilities. One is a backup power generator, and the other is an uninterruptible power supply unit (UPS). Here’s a look at both emergency power supply options for healthcare institutions.
Backup generators are a common choice for hospitals and other types of healthcare facilities. These generators must meet specific guidelines which includes maintenance and testing requirements.
The downside to relying on a backup generator is the start-up time. Even though the generator restarts the power within a few seconds it can have devasting consequences on some healthcare equipment. In turn, it can affect patients’ quality of care.
Uninterruptible Power Supply (UPS)
Along with backup generators, many healthcare facilities also use uninterruptible power supply (UPS) units. A UPS kicks in automatically when it detects a power outage. These units keep the power on while the generator is starting, ensuring an uninterrupted power supply. The batteries in a UPS unit can also keep the power on for a while if the generator fails or takes longer than normal to resume the electrical load.
Have you read our blog on uninterruptible power supply and what it really means? We cover topics such as, when a UPS system is needed, the differences between UPS units and other auxiliary power sources, and so much more.
Benefits of Emergency Power Supply for Healthcare Facilities
Healthcare facilities, including hospitals are dependent on electricity. Losing power for any amount of time is not an option. It not only risks damaging vital equipment, but it also places patients’ lives at risk.
The best solution for healthcare facilities is to combine backup generators with UPS units. It ensures the power stays on regardless of the reason for the outage.
Partnering with Action Services Group will ensure your healthcare facility always has power and we are ready to discuss your various options. Contact us toady to learn more about backup power supplies for healthcare facilities. Call 610-558-9773, email [email protected] or schedule a call.