Spire had engaged Howorth to carry out limited service functions at its hospitals since 2009, but when the entire contract came up for renewal earlier this year, Howorth was successful in its bid to take over the total Theatre Test and Validation contract for all 37 Spire hospitals.
Howorth says competitive pricing and the ability to offer a comprehensive service including any remedial works to the UCV canopies, together with recommendations on how to overcome any other problems with the theatre ventilation system, won it the contract.
The service package includes an annual inspection of the AHU and plantroom equipment in line with HTM03-01 Part B, which had not previously been undertaken. In order to offer as cost-effective a plan as possible, Howorth also suggested making only an annual visit, rather than bi-annual, and training hospital engineers to undertake interim pre-filter changes themselves.
Howorth’s Service division has expanded its range of services significantly over recent months, adding theatre and cleanroom validation, pharmaceutical and medical equipment spares and upgrades, duct cleaning and sterilisation and microbiological sampling to its already extensive portfolio.
Howorth has employed four additional engineers to meet the recent demand for its services.
Managing director of Howorth, Adrian Parkin, said: “A major part of our strategy for 2010 has been to go out and win the Service and Validation business that we knew was out there. Our technical expertise, commercially attractive offerings and long standing reputation means customers can have confidence in every area Howorth works within. As a company, we look forward to continuing to build our customer base in the Service and Validation field.”
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UK industry is currently beset by high business costs, overly cautious lending and government austerity measures. But some support for r&d has been forthcoming through recent UK Government funding and tax credits, while regional grants are encouraging investment in some areas. The pharmaceutical industry accounts for 60% of r&d spending in the UK, but other sectors such as healthcare, automotive and the space industry, are offering opportunities for cleanroom suppliers.