The Sir Robert Ogden Macmillan Centre – a newly-built cancer support and information centre based at Harrogate and District NHS Foundation Trust in North Yorkshire, UK – has installed antimicrobial copper touch surfaces throughout to help patient safety by providing a more hygienic environment for users of the facility.
Designed by IBI Group and constructed by Sir Robert McAlpine, the centre offers patients the highest quality treatment teamed with an integrated supportive care and complementary therapy scheme with the goal of providing a holistic and therapeutic service.
Given the key importance of cleanliness within any healthcare environment – to reduce the risk of infections spreading between patients, staff and visitors – IBI Group singled out some of the most frequently touched surfaces in the new centre for special consideration. Door furniture is touched often, and by many different people, and was thus the first surface targeted. The material needed to offer improved hygiene while blending seamlessly with the aesthetic of the centre.
Allgood answered this challenge with its Contego antimicrobial copper lever handles, push plates, pull handles, WC turns and escutcheons. Made from a copper alloy benefiting from the metal’s inherent ability to kill bacteria and viruses on contact, Contego items have the aesthetic of stainless steel, which means that they also complement the surrounding, non-touch items such as signage, door closers and kick plates.
Touch surfaces made from solid copper and copper alloys – collectively termed ‘antimicrobial copper’ – are being installed in healthcare facilities around the world as an additional way to prevent infection. With proven efficacy against antibiotic-resistant bacteria, including MRSA and C. difficile, and highly-infectious viruses such as Influenza A and norovirus, antimicrobial copper surfaces continuously reduce contamination, in-between regular cleaning, reducing the risk of pathogens being picked up on people’s hands and spreading infection.