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Floors & Flooring Health

Design and functionality for the floor


Floors in hospitals have to meet more stringent requirements than floors in practically any other building. Heavy traffic in the main entrance, corridors and diagnostic areas that are subjected to severe strain from moving beds and heavy equipment around, intensively used operating theatres with their high standards of hygiene: all these different areas place varying demands on the floor covering. The same applies to retirement and nursing homes or medical practices.

nora2No matter where they are installed in the health sector, rubber floor coverings from nora systems make their benefits felt to the full. Safety and functionality are, of course, a paramount concern. At the same time, nora floor coverings also score points with contemporary designs, a high degree of economic viability and ideal hygienic characteristics. With a broad colour range comprising over 300 colours in the standard range, various surface structures and the diverse design possibilities offered by inlays, for example, they allow for creative interior design concepts in conjunction with contributing to a feel-good atmosphere. The extremely extensive range of colours from pastel shades through to rich, bright hues available for the rubber floor coverings is truly exceptional.

Harmonious environment

Especially popular in healthcare facilities are the rubber floor coverings noraplan signa and noraplan sentica with their harmonious colour schemes. The youngest member of the noraplan product family, noraplan sentica, even won the Nightingale Award (one of the most prestigious design awards in the U.S. health sector) shortly after its launch in 2012, winning praise for its quality, functionality, wear resistance, design, sustainability properties and the excellent cost-performance ratio. The Nightingale Award is presented to innovative products which contribute to creating an atmosphere in hospital environments that is conducive to patient recovery. The designing of healing environments has become the benchmark in Germany’s healthcare sector as well.

nora3These strivings are supported by nora systems with a comprehensive range of system solutions that are specifically tailored to meet the needs of healthcare facilities. Flooring coverings from nora allow the realisation of integral design solutions. For example, the rubber coverings are available in the same design but with different functional characteristics, be it electrostatic conductivity, enhanced slip resistance or exceptional acoustic properties. From stairtreads to hygienic skirtings – they all look as if they were cast from one mould. With the aid of the NCS system that is also used by nora systems, the colours of the walls and furniture can be precisely matched with the colour of the floor covering.

Excellent economic viability

The dense closed surface of nora’s floor coverings makes them exceedingly resistant to wear and means they can be easily cleaned and continue to practically look like new even after many years of heavy use. And in contrast to other resilient floor coverings, they do not need a coating either. This means that nora products offer a distinct advantage, since the coatings of other resilient floor coverings wear out and have to be replaced at frequent intervals. This is not only time-consuming and expensive, but also leads to considerable operational disruptions during the refurbishment. Consequently, although they are somewhat more expensive in the procurement, in the long term nora rubber floor coverings are the most economically viable solution for hospitals, as well as retirement and nursing homes, for 90 percent of the life cycle costs of a floor covering are maintenance-related.

Ideal hygiene characteristics

The cleaning and disinfecting capability of the floor covering is a crucial factor of all-encompassing hygiene concepts for healthcare facilities The extremely dense surface of nora rubber floor coverings makes them resistant to surface disinfectants and stains. Brief exposure to solvents, diluted acids or lyes does not leave any lasting traces either.

nora4And because, unlike PVC, rubber floor coverings do not contain plasticizers, they are not only low in emissions but are also dimensionally stable and can therefore be installed without any joints. This is both optically and hygienically beneficial. Tests conducted by the Hygiene Institute at the University of Heidelberg have confirmed that floor areas where nora rubber floor coverings without joints are installed can be fully disinfected.

Last but not least, low-emission rubber floor coverings guarantee healthy indoor air, which is why they were the first resilient floor coverings to be awarded the “Blue Angel …protecting the environment and health” eco label as long ago as 2006. A healthy living environment with low-emission building materials is one of the key factors that contributes to the welfare of patients with weakened immune systems in particular, as well as that of hospital and nursing home staff.