Whilst Dura have successfully completed a number of laboratories, medical and R&D installations over the years, when Walnut Hill Equine Veterinary Clinic contacted us to enquire whether we could fit out their examination rooms and lab, it offered us a unique challenge.
Zara Heathcote of Walnut Hill, was tasked with the job of project managing this rapidly expanding practice refurbishment, and wanted to create an environment that was robust and stylish, but also well organised and easy to clean. "Most veterinary clinics whether small animal, farm animal or equine have examination rooms that are pretty much adapted fitted kitchens with medical grade accessories. Usually cupboards are made of laminate which looks OK when new, but is not really suitable long term for the sort of heavy-duty regular cleaning we need to do. There is also the question of security. Laminate cupboards rarely have locks and instruments, pharmaceuticals etc should be locked away. "
The need to find a solution made out of something better prompted Zara to start making investigations into steel furniture. With very limited and extremely costly steel options available from veterinary suppliers, she was just about to head back to the drawing board when she realised that the answer had been staring her in the face all along inside her parents garage! Owners of one of the very original Dura modular garages, Zara's parents have been Dura fans for nearly 20 years. Their fitted garage, whilst old, is still going strong and it provided Zara with her eureka moment. Shortly after, Zara and Jack Wallace (joint owner of WH) visited our showroom and realised the huge potential of using Dura's modular steel system in a way that could be perfectly tailored to each area within the facility.
The main examination room has two large runs of modular furniture, plentiful storage, integrated towel and glove dispensers, draw units, waste disposal units and large utility cupboards for hiding away bulky wash down equipment. All of the cabinets are easy to clean and are powder coated in a practical black/grey. Striking decals featuring the practice logo have been added too. Medical grade sinks and taps were sourced and incorporated into the installation as were under cabinet lights and socket points into the back panels. A screen for displaying patient records, x-rays, test results etc. was also mounted into a wall unit and the whole installation was topped with a medical grade stainless steel work surface.
Moving into the two smaller examination rooms, there are two useful fold down, space saving work benches and very practical lockable mobile draw units that can be wheeled closer to the patient to provide storage for instrumentation and a useful work surface.
Finally, the lab is a small room of low-level Dura on which is positioned vital lab instrumentation, with ample organised storage and a useful bridging unit for anyone requiring to sit down to task. A sink was also installed into this area making it a self-contained facility. An amazingly interesting project for Dura, the installation and small adaptations to bring this project to fruition are testimony to the manufacturing capabilities of Dura and our flexible approach.
"It's just great! continues Zara Choosing a product not specifically designed for veterinary practice was a gamble, but it totally paid off. We had far greater and more diverse choice of steel furniture than we ever could have purchased through a traditional veterinary furniture supplier. We are thrilled with the results. The rooms are organised now and look fantastic, but the real plus for us is how easy they are to keep clean to the clinical standards that are expected of veterinary practice. I don't need to worry if the furniture will stand the test of time either because I know that it will. All of our clients comment on how unique and sleek it looks. Thanks to Dura, we have pioneering facilities that go beyond even our expectations."
Walnut Hill are a forward thinking and experienced team of equine veterinary surgeons, committed to optimising the performance of the sports horse, or caring for life-long equine friends or pets. Based in Henley in Arden, in the heart of Warwickshire, their large catchment area reaches Worcestershire, Leicestershire and Northants.
If you would like to hear more about this or any of the other projects in Dura's case studies section then please call 01280 706050 or email email@example.com.