Sheet vinyl flooring and luxury vinyl tile (LVT) have become increasingly prevalent in healthcare environments like hospitals, clinics and nursing homes because they are highly durable, but also provide warmth to spaces through natural wood and tile looks. These qualities, combined with vinyl’s ease of maintenance, make it a strong choice for healthcare facilities. Other EBD benefits vinyl flooring can bring to a project include:
- Reduced noise. The way vinyl flooring is constructed, coupled with the presence of a comfort backing, can reduce noise levels in hospital corridors, waiting areas and patient rooms. A quiet, peaceful environment promotes healing and speedy recovery times.
- Comfort underfoot. Hospital staff and doctors spend countless hours on their feet, so good vinyl flooring should provide ergonomic relief. It should also rebound properly and give proper support.
- Reduced slips and falls. Vinyl flooring offers impressive slip resistant qualities and provides the correct amount of grip and slide (coefficient of friction) in healthcare environments.
- Reduced nosocomial infections. Good vinyl flooring should be bacteriostatic and fungistatic, or come pretreated with a solution that deters the growth of microorganisms. A vinyl floor can assist in halting the spread of germs that cause nosocomial infections.
- Better air quality. A good vinyl floor with a UV-cured treatment does not require waxing or polishing and is impervious to water and stains. This eliminates concerns associated with the use of harsh cleaning chemicals and the amount of time a patient’s recovery is interrupted due to maintenance. Vinyl’s water-tight nature can also deter the growth of mold that can cause respiratory problems in some patients.
- Improved life-cycle costs. Vinyl flooring can withstand heavy static or dynamic loads like rolling medical equipment or gurneys, and does not impede rolling loads like carpet. This resiliency means that vinyl flooring is replaced less frequently, so long-term renovations do not get in the way of patient recovery.
- Better recuperative environment. A wide array of texture and color combinations are offered with today’s vinyl flooring. It can take on the look of exotic or rustic woods to give a “homey” or “spa-like” feel, both of which have been shown to promote faster healing.
- Better sense of direction. Vinyl can be installed in practically any shape or pattern with water jet cut-ins also available. Custom cut-ins and design options can be used for wayfinding techniques, which allow patients and visitors to navigate easily and without confusion through hospitals and facilities.