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Home > Benchmarking > Healthcare

Benchmarking: Healthcare Facilities

Benchmarking is an assessment approach in which energy-related metrics measured or estimated at one facility are compared to those from other facilities and/or specific performance targets. Benchmarks can be derived from distributions of metric values obtained from facilities having similar functionality or characteristics, from engineering analysis or building simulation modeling, or from expert knowledge of standard and best practices. Energy benchmarking allows building owners, managers, and facilities engineers and managers to view how their energy use compares to that of their "peer buildings" (buildings similar in size, function, or another service metric). Based on the performance of an individual building relative to the benchmark, facilities managers can identify potential best practices at their facility (e.g., where they perform better than the benchmark) as well as areas for improvement (e.g., where they perform worse than the benchmark).

The research team at LBNL developed an energy benchmarking system for hospitals to provide information to better understand hospitals' energy performance and identify energy savings opportunities. While many benchmarks begin with information available from utility bills, the LBNL benchmark works with more resolved energy use data. Singer (2009) presents Version 1.0 of the Hospital Energy Benchmark

This benchmarking system is designed to understand energy use through metrics associated with the following major building energy services and systems:

  • Cooling (including space and equipment)
  • Space heating
  • Domestic hot water (DHW)
  • Steam
  • Ventilation (air movement)
  • Lighting
  • Miscellaneous equipment and plug loads (including distributed medical equipment and computers).

Additionally considered are the following services and spatial resolutions of specific relevance to hospitals:

  • Large ("Group I") medical equipment.
  • Patient room areas.
  • Other large, resolvable loads (e.g. data centers, kitchens), as feasible.
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