Consistently ranked one of the nation’s top healthcare builders, DPR’s proven industry experts understand the unique needs and applications of the intricate systems that are the lifeline of healthcare facilities.

April 16, 2012

Small Hospital, Big Technology

Big hospitals don't always mean better technology. In his latest blog post called "Small Hospitals, Big Technology" for Healthcare Building Ideas' blog, DPR's Gerry DeWulf explores how small hospitals in rural or suburban areas are now utilizing the same technology found in large or urban hospitals.

This technology can include "smart" ORs, electronic medical records and state-of-the-art medical equipment. Read up on small hospitals and how a flexible hospital can grow and adapt with its community.

March 29, 2012

The Hybrid OR

DPR’s Gerry DeWulf’s latest blog post to Healthcare Building Ideas discusses the fast-emerging trend toward the development and demand of Hybrid ORs.

Based on our experience at Banner Health at Good Samaritan Hospital, Gerry shares a couple of things for owners to think about as they consider hybrid ORs for their facilities. Read Gerry's "Hybrid ORs--The Magic Kingdom" post on Healthcare Building Idea's blog.

Any renovation in the OR department is complex – but the Hybrid OR just raises the game to a higher level. So, in addition to his blog post, Gerry has the following advice for project teams when it comes to Hybrid ORs:

  • Typically Hybrid OR’s are being added on, or built next to, existing ORs. There will be more demolition noise, more cores to drill in the slabs, and more structure to be drilled and bolted. Get to know the department staff around you, respect their concerns, start planning early, and share your schedule for the work well in advance. Tell them how you will mitigate the impact to them – and keep your promise. Prepare for lots of off-hours work and ICRA that gets put in place every evening and removed prior to start of business in the morning. Remember that some departments, like ER, never close and you may get very limited access during very brief time periods.
  • For structural requirements, demanding tolerances of today’s new imaging and angiography equipment require stiffer structural supports than in the past. This can be a major disruption the departments located beneath your new Hybrid OR room, and dollars and time in your construction budget and schedule. Try to reinforce/stiffen what you have.
  • For Cooling/HVAC requirements, there are two areas of concern:
    1) The OR room itself will probably require a larger volume of air than that of the previous function in that location. Make certain that existing air-handlers have the fan capacity, humidity control, and cooling coils to handle the additional load.
    2) Cooling load in the equipment room that houses all the computers and UPS systems that support the communications, controls and operation of the new equipment. The most common solution is a CRAC (Computer Room Air Conditioner) unit that requires house-generated chilled water supply and return.
  • Power, control, data, and display wiring is everywhere. Ceiling space is already full of HVAC ductwork, medical gas piping and electrical conduit, which now may need to be relocated. This can be a budget and/or schedule concern if not identified early in the design process. Find the accurate as-built drawing or get your head above the ceiling and get BIM coordination started during the design.
  • Look for opportunities to re-route existing utilities out of the footprint of the new Hybrid OR. You will need every inch of space possible for new ductwork, med-gas piping, boom and light supports, and conduit. The best time to have the most budget impact is early in the design process.
  • Once the project is complete, staff will fight tooth and nail to keep you out of their new OR, now and in the future. Create your “as-built” drawings or updated BIM model as you go and make certain everything is documented before you close up the ceiling. Good record drawings also means that future projects will not require design teams to access the space – a great benefit to the client!

March 25, 2012

ASU Students Putting Ideas into Action

Hamilton Espinosa contributed another blog for Healthcare Building Ideas. In it, he describes G3Box, an innovative startup created by Arizona State University students that recycles materials and turns it into medical clinics around the world.

This impressive student venture has been featured in Entrepreneur and Inc. magazine, as well as other national media outlets.

The non-profit turned to DPR and SmithGroup to create their first maternity clinic, which is now on-track for completion at the end of July. Read more about this amazing project here: "ASU Students Putting Ideas into Action."

March 14, 2012

IPD Enhances Project Results

In his ongoing contribution to Healthcare Building Ideas' blog, DPR's Gerry DeWulf explores the Integrated Project Delivery method in "Enhancing Project Results though an IPD Approach."

Whether a formal IPD contract is in place or not, IPD principles can be used to get the team on the same page and deliver great results for the owner. 

With these principles in place, decisions can be made quickly in order to do what's best for the project. However, innovation and commitment are necessary in order to make this happen.

January 30, 2012

What is Value? DPR’s Hamilton Espinosa Contributes to Healthcare Building Ideas Blog

Over the next six months, I will be contributing to Healthcare Building Ideas' blog. In my first post, I discuss how the term "value" can have a different meaning to owners and project team members.

I discuss how issues like BIM and IPD can come into play when determing value. Is value merely saving money? Is it providing upgraded systems or streamlined delivery methods? What does value mean to you from your point of view? Check out the "What is Value?" post and see what you decide. Keep checking the Healthcare Building Ideas' blog to see more thought-provoking entries on a variety of healthcare topics.

November 7, 2011

Stimulating the Economy: UCSF Mission Bay

UCSF's 878,000-sq.-ft., $1.5 billion Mission Bay Medical Center project is stimulating the economy--including DPR's, according to the San Francisco Business Times.

The article discusses DPR's involvement with the mammoth project and company growth. It also features an interview with Mike Humphrey, DPR's General Manager for the firm’s San Francisco office.

October 18, 2011

Topping Out at UCSF Medical Center at Mission Bay

The UCSF Medical Center at Mission Bay project reached an important milestone. Abuzz with excitement, DPR celebrated the topping out of the $1.5 billion, 289-bed campus. This signifies the completion of structural steel erection. On track to open in 2015, the 878,000-sq.-ft. medical facility is aiming for LEED Gold and consists of 3 hospitals. Congrats to the team, keep up the great work!

To see what Medical Construction & Design magazine wrote about this achievement, click here

October 16, 2011

DPR Celebrates Topping Out of UCSF Medical Center

Nearly one year after breaking ground on the $1.5 billion, 878,000-gross-sq.-ft. project, the team will celebrate with a traditional topping out ceremony, where a beam signifying the end of the structural steel erection will be put in place.

Be a part of the milestone topping out celebration of the future UCSF Medical Center at Mission Bay without leaving your computer screen. You can join the topping out celebration live via the web on Monday, October 17th at 11:30 A.M. (PDT) at

Read more about the project and the topping out in the press release:

September 15, 2011

A Team United: Sutter Health Eden Medical Center IPD project highlighted in ENR

The 11-party Integrated Project Delivery (IPD) team for the Sutter Health Eden Medical Center project made the cover of ENR's September issue. With an unprecedented number of team members sharing in risks and rewards based on one relational contract, DPR's involvement in this exciting, $320 million IPD project takes an "all-for-one-project" delivery strategy dubbed by ENR as "IPD on steroids."

At 70% completion, the project is trending six weeks ahead of schedule and on budget. Also of note is that there are only 333 requests for information, when 3,000 is typical for an equivalent conventionally built hospital project. Team members, who were skeptical at first, have become believers in the IPD process--some saying that it is the best project they have ever worked on.

Read the full story here.