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Nurses from the Central Hospital Karlstad drive patients into the hospital room with lighting solutions from Chromaviso
Ane EskildsenJanuary 5, 20166 min read

The Central Hospital in Karlstad Uses The Latest Technologies

When the new operating house at the Central Hospital in Karlstad opens, health-promoting lighting solutions will support the patients' experience and improve the working environment.

In 2016, the Central Hospital in Karlstad will unveil a state-of-the-art and future-proof operating house spanning 7800 square meters. Through this construction, Värmland is leading the way with the latest technologies and a clear vision.

— This will be the hospital of the future - with the patient at the centre. We are creating the framework for a new patient flow, where the patient only needs to go to one place. At the same time, we are focused on a good working environment and flexibility. Lighting plays an important role in this, says Tobias Kjellberg, Head of Healthcare at the Central Hospital in Karlstad.

Operating rooms with colour-coded lighting zones

Lighting is one of the areas that the Värmland County Council has prioritized. Ergonomic Lighting from the Danish company Chromaviso has been installed in all 27 operating theatres. This lighting concept has a proven effect on quality and the working environment.

— With the right lighting, we create a better working environment for the staff and a pleasant environment for the patients. We already use Ergonomic Lighting in several operating rooms with great results. The staff reports less fatigue, and the combination of complementary colours red and green improves the quality of the screen image and creates a balanced and good light throughout the room. By installing it in all operating theatres in the new building, we ensure that it is used in all operations, explains Tobias Kjellberg.

Hälso og Sjukvårdschaf Tobias Kjellberg foran indgangen til Landstingshuset

Ergonomic Lighting divides an operating room into colour-coded lighting zones that are tailored to different work functions. The lighting is programmed with a range of settings for before, during, and after procedures.

— With Ergonomic Lighting, the Central Hospital achieves the highest standard in lighting. The control system works really well and can be customized for each individual room, says Linus Idemark, project manager from Sweco, the consulting engineers for the construction project.

Circadian lighting for patients and staff

In addition, the new operating house will be equipped with Circadian Lighting from Chromaviso in 18 waking places, five monitoring rooms, and nine intensive care units. This health-promoting lighting solution supports the natural circadian rhythm of both patients and staff. The combination of these two lighting concepts creates a comprehensive lighting experience.

— We know that patients recover faster with circadian lighting. We believe that light has a significant impact, not only on the patients but also on the staff. That's why we have chosen to prioritize it, says Tobias Kjellberg.

This lighting solution is the subject of international research projects, where the effects of light on patients and staff are measured in terms of sleep, well-being, length of stay, and sick leave, among other factors.

A flowchart of the phases of the circadian light in a hospital room at the Central Hospital in Karlstad

Lyset er kraftigst midt på dagen for at simulere dagslys og opnå en fysiologisk effekt. Om natten tændes et specialudviklet natlys, som sikrer personalet optimal belysning samtidig med, at kroppens døgnrytme ikke forstyrres. Natlyset er bredspektret og indeholder alle farver, undtagen dem, som primært påvirker kroppens vågenhed om natten. Det betyder, at personalet har gode visuelle forhold, uden at det påvirker kroppens døgnrytme og søvn.

Customized control panel improves usability

The control of the lighting system is achieved through both central touch screens in the staff room and push panels at each bedside. The user interface has been specially designed, drawing upon years of experience in creating flexible and user-friendly solutions with high usability, explains Torben Skov Hansen, Innovation Manager at Chromaviso.

— We have focused on creating control panels that cater to different needs. The staff should have an overview of all bed spaces and the ability to adjust the lighting according to the treatment, ambience, or activity they want to support. We have worked with colours, icons, and words to develop user-friendly and more homely push-button panels that are located in small rest areas and activity rooms, where they can be operated by both staff and patients, he says.

Nurse uses Chromaviso's control panel at Central Hospital in Karlstad

Complete LED-based lighting solution

The lighting system utilizes the latest LED technologies and is a complete solution, with new programming, lighting design, and flexibility.

— In the operating rooms, the staff gets the right lighting exactly where they want it. In the intensive care units, patients and staff have the ability to control the lighting near each bed, says Leif Fransson, project manager at MIDROC, responsible for the electrical contractors in the construction project.

Reliability has also been a focus. In addition to the many positive effects of the lighting and the new technologies, the focus has been on ensuring a reliable solution.

— We have not had any issues with delivery or commissioning. Therefore, I expect that I will not have any problems with the lighting in the future, states Leif Fransson.

Collaboration between multiple competencies

The ambitious lighting project has been successful due to a great collaboration throughout the construction process - from initial consultation to design, implementation, and commissioning.

— In the design phase, we worked closely with Chromaviso, going through each room together. This has resulted in getting it right the first time, which is fantastic considering it is the largest and most advanced installation in Sweden, explains Linus Idermark from Sweco.

The decision to choose the Danish lighting company was the result of a thorough decision-making process and several years of collaboration and dialogue about different options.

— Chromaviso has been a great partner since 2007 when we installed Ergonomic Lighting for the first time. They provide very competent advice and have proven over the years that they follow up with user implementation. So when we had to choose a supplier for the new building, we considered factors such as effectiveness, price, and expertise. And we all agreed that we got the best overall solution from Chromaviso, says Tobias Kjellberg.

Training of users

The lighting is now in place, marking the beginning of a new phase in the project: Training users on how to use the lighting system before the opening in March 2016.

— Now we have created the conditions so that no matter where you work in the new building, you have access to optimal lighting. There are high expectations among the staff, and it is Chromaviso's next task to train them, explains Tobias Kjellberg.

Chromaviso will be conducting ongoing training sessions and technical follow-ups throughout January and February.

— When you choose a health-promoting light like ours, it is crucial for us to ensure that all users are equipped to operate the lighting system and understand the various options and benefits it offers. It is also during this phase that we can adjust the lighting to the department's needs and patient category. Finally, the dialogue with customers contributes to our continued innovation, concludes Torben Skov Hansen.

About Circadian Lighting

Circadian Lighting is an automatically controlled lighting system that supports the body's natural circadian rhythm. The light is strongest in the middle of the day, and at night, a specially designed night light is turned on to provide optimal lighting for the staff without disrupting their circadian rhythm.

This lighting system is based on a clinically validated light protocol that takes into account the patient category and the department's rhythm. It also offers customized lighting settings for selected areas, activities, and emergency situations. With a specially designed control panel, the optimal lighting is always just a touch away.