Rathbone Hospital in Liverpool has improved the comfort and safety of its residents and staff, with the installation of Pilkington OptifloatTM T and OptilamTM K at a purpose-built new mental health facility.
The £10 million redevelopment of the site ensures that Mersey Care NHS Trust can offer specialist mental health services for the area, in modern therapeutic facilities designed specifically to meet its needs. Mersey Care worked with construction and development partner Laing O’Rourke and specialist contractor, BritPlas. Together they created an environment that combined functionality, including safety-conscious design and materials, with aesthetic awareness to enable the surroundings to be as therapeutic as possible for patients.
Service users and staff were involved in the design process, helping to define what was needed for the Rathbone unit to be a success. After a series of clinical tests, Pilkington InsulightTM units were specified - with a construction of 10mm OptifloatTM T, a 12mm cavity and 6.4mm Pilkington OptilamTM K – to provide the desired results. It held firm against an array of objects that might be used by agitated patients in extreme circumstances. The glass had to withstand the impact of whatever was thrown at it — and crucially not shatter into potentially hazardous shards.
The project to provide a new building for the unit has been an unequivocal success. The unit houses 40 patients with severe and endurng mental health problems in conditions of low security and who are on a programme of rehabilitation. The installation has led to Mersey Care recommending the use of the Pilkington InsulightTM solution in future possible capital projects.
Peter Maj, IGU Sales Development Representative from Pilkington, comments: “The window had to pass certain design criteria, aesthetics, function, ligature resistance, resistance to pass contraband, cleaning and maintenance and robustness. A number of glass types and frames had been tried but had all failed to meet robustness. That’s where we came in with different options.
“Pilkington produces a range of safety and security glass solutions for a variety of applications, and offers a full support package to architects and installers to ensure the correct solution is chosen for the specific requirements of an application, such as those encountered at Rathbone Hospital.”