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University Hospitals Leuven, central sterile services

Location Leuven, Belgium
Timeline 2009 - 2012

extension and renovation of a central sterile services department


The central sterilization unit of the University Hospitals Leuven has been renovated and expanded to meet current standards. The project was carried out in a minimum of phases and without disrupting the operational flow.

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  • Leuven University Hospitals
  • VK
740 m²


The CSSD is an essential service of a hospital, with a high financial impact on hospital procedures.

The central sterile services department of Leuven University Hospitals was having some issues. An outdated structure no longer met the contemporary standards, such as a strict separation between areas, which has consequences for maintenance and hygiene. There was also a discrepancy between the washing capacity and sterilisation capacity. And finally, air pressure and temperature were difficult to adjust. VK was assigned to renovate and extend the department while it remained operational, with a minimum of phases, without disturbing the operational flux.

VK design and project plan included:

  • a strict architectural separation between the dirty area, the clean room and the sterile area
  • a separation between these areas through underpressure and overpressure
  • access to the cleanroom through airlocks
  • the capacity of all areas was extended and a relaxation room was added for the personnel
  • a separation between all incoming and outgoing fluxes
  • a strict separation of person flows between the dirty area and the cleanroom materials easy in maintenance: pvc floors, massive laminated wall and ceiling covering, accessible for maintenance of the technical installations. Except for the cleanroom, where a fixed ceiling was applied and the installations are accessible from outside the cleanroom.

Pleasant working environment

The extension was constructed in the same finishing materials as the existing facilities. However, the window frames are from aluminium instead of timber, because of the higher airtightness a cleanroom demands. Also, daylight is introduced to a maximum, creating a pleasant working environment. The entire department was renovated and extended in four phases, while the unit remained operational.

The CSSD is an essential service of a hospital, with a high financial impact on hospital procedures. This project improved procedures and personnel satisfaction, leading to higher efficiency.

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