Renal system

Renal system

Hospitals have an increasingly diverse range of needs when it comes to finding the right type of accommodation. With rising demands being placed on all areas of the healthcare sector, it is vital that these needs can be met quickly and efficiently.

Portakabin’s Duplex Building System uses individual volumetric all-steel modules to rapidly construct multiple storey buildings with unlimited floor space. Modules are available in a wide range of sizes and can be linked side-by-side or end-to-end to offer complete flexibility in meeting various applications.

Claimed to provide a combination of overall structural strength, high levels of thermal insulation and safe fire performance, Duplex buildings offer an attractive and efficient solution to a wide range of accommodation problems, as well as meeting permanent building standards. Available to buy or hire for as long as required, this building system provides the ideal solution for a wide range of accommodation problems across the healthcare sector, says Portakabin.

Hiring buildings on a short or long-term basis can help solve a variety of problems, such as a temporary shortage of accommodation or avoiding the huge capital outlay that is involved when buying a traditional building.


Birmingham Heartlands Hospital extended its renal dialysis service with the help of Portakabin. “We are always trying to improve our service and make it more convenient for the patients,” explains Richard Alton, estate development officer at Birmingham Heartlands Hospital. “We installed a 16 station satellite unit at Solihull a few years ago in addition to the main unit at Heartlands. A unit at Good Hope Hospital that will serve the people living in the north of the city will be another step in the right direction. A new permanent building will not be ready at Good Hope for about three years so we needed to hire a building during the interim period.”

After in-depth discussions with the Portakabin team at its Birmingham hire centre, the Duplex system was identified as the ideal solution to Birmingham Heartlands Hospital’s accommodation requirements. “The Duplex Building System has many features which made it ideal for Birmingham Heartlands Hospital,” explains Nick Griffin, Portakabin’s West Midlands regional hire manager. “It can quickly and easily create multiple storey buildings with bespoke layout options. This makes it perfect for healthcare buildings, which have very specific requirements.”

John Wheeler, chief renal technician at the hospital, is very impressed with the building that has been provided by Portakabin. “Having visited Portakabin’s head office in York in the past, I was confident that they would be able to provide us with the type of building we needed.

“The land available for the building to be constructed on was very limited in size. However, Portakabin was able to supply a two-storey building with plenty of space to accommodate a renal dialysis unit. They were also able to meet all of our requirements, right down to the positioning of the windows,” says John.

Portakabin provided a building with just under 300 m of floor space, matching exactly the allocated footprint. “The site was very tight in terms of available space. The building size and positioning of the staircase pod were designed to fit the site and to maximise downstairs space to allow disabled access,” says Nick.

The installation of the building took just over six weeks. “Portakabin was able to provide us with a fully functional renal dialysis unit in a very short space of time,” concludes John Wheeler. “The building offers an excellent environment for both patients and staff”.

Copyright Wilmington Publishing Ltd. Jun 2001

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