Porous wood furniture and compromised metal chairs continue to be a challenge to the healthcare industry. The research is clear, solid surface furnishings within a healthcare environment is easier to clean and can withstand the harsh cleaning protocols required to keep hospitals clean and germ free. With that said, hospitals are on the hunt for the best surfaces to use in healthcare settings.
How good is a wood surface?
The best place for wood in a hospital setting is where patients and guests can view it outside. Window views of beautiful green and flowering trees reduce stress and aide in a faster recovery. Walking paths and sitting spaces in small outside parks aid in recovery because people flourish in the great outdoors. A tree grows when it is in the rain, but take wood out of its natural environment, bring it inside and witness to a fast deterioration of this product. Any bump of a wooden tabletop produces a mar at best and worse, an irreplaceable chip. Wood does not handle the constant care practices in hospitals well. Cleaning with cleaning fluids and bleach cause it to swell and splinter.
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Is a metal surface strong enough for you?
Steel and specifically stainless steel is in many area of the hospital, because it is a hard substance and can stand up to heavy use without breaking. Hospitals use metal in operating rooms. You will also find it on door handles, as grab bars in bathrooms and in kitchens. The downside to metal is it scratches easily and that changes the physical appearance of the metal top. Metal with scratches is unsightly and creates a place for bacteria to grow and transfer from person to person.
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What is preferred in a healthcare surface?
The surfaces in a hospital have to accommodate everyone who encounters them, patients, guests and staff. They should be healthy, safe, and durable and look good. The longer they can maintain the attributes, the most cost effective the surfaces are. Surfaces are touched by everyone in a hospital lobby or a doctor’s waiting room, including children with runny noses and constant coughs, adults who put purses and food down on them, people who change diapers and even sit on the tabletops. Solid surfaces that do not scuff, scratch or mar are the preferred surfaces in any healthcare setting. The surfaces that can be easily clean with healthcare grade cleaning products and maintain their good looks for years are even better.