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Mercy Health Center Neonatal Intensive Care Unit, Oklahoma City

mercy_healthcareMercy Health Center in Oklahoma City renovated and expanded its neonatal intensive care unit to incorporate the most current technology and care unit design. The unit is one of only three Level III neonatal intensive care units in the greater Oklahoma City metropolitan area.

Design for the 21,000-square-foot renovation was provided by Rees Associates Inc. and features prominent curves and complex radiuses in hallways, nurses' stations and common areas. Approximately 1,400 linear feet of 3 5/8- and 6-inch Flex-C Trac, Flex-C Angle and Flex-C Arch were utilized to meet design objectives. General contractor United Acoustics Inc. installed the Flex- Ability Concepts products. According to President David Penland, United Acoustics has an on-going relationship with Mercy Health Center and is also a frequent user of Flex-C Trac. "In this day and age, labor costs are key," Penland says. "Advances in the drywall and ceiling industry come along pretty infrequently. Flex-C Trac has made a very positive impact on the industry and what we do. It really increases productivity and ease of installation. We seldom use the track bender we purchased several years ago."

Ron Palmer, field superintendent with United Acoustics notes, "Architects seem to be designing more curves than ever, particularly in health care applications. This job had radius eyebrows, ellipses, compound curves and just about everything you could imagine. The Flex-C Trac really simplifies the job and it's easy to use. I can put any of my guys on it."

One newborn of every 10 will require special medical attention. The renovation includes the expansion of special care nursery beds from 28 to 42 and the inclusion of space and amenities for family comfort and convenience. In particular, the NICU includes a family gathering room, 16 private rooms, 13 semiprivate rooms, two lactation rooms and various nurse stations throughout the unit.

Architect: Rees Associates Inc., Oklahoma City

Installer: United Acoustics Inc., Oklahoma City

Curved framing: Flex-Ability Concepts, Oklahoma City,