Modern Healthcare turns to Mike Cavanaugh, our sustainability leader, for perspective on how healthcare leaders can design resilient and storm-resistant facilities in its newest issue. As part of a deep-dive story on the crisis in Puerto Rico, Modern Healthcare asked Cavanaugh to detail what all healthcare institutions – regardless of geography – should be thinking about related to resilient design.

“Part of preparedness planning is accepting that disasters such as hurricanes will be more common, and that a facility must plan beyond the safety of its own walls to have an effective response,” says Cavanaugh. “What happened in Puerto Rico, not only with buildings losing power and losing access to clean water but roads being unacceptable, and infrastructure being totally wiped out, vulnerable infrastructure needs to be part of the purview of hospitals.”

Cavanaugh adds that providers in states he’s worked with have taken emergencies into account when building or rebuilding structures so they are capable of withstanding the short-and long-term impacts of a disaster. Some of these designs have included alternate power sources like solar panels in the event electrical power lines go down and generators fail.”

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