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Regional Hospital Health Impact
PUBLIC HEALTH AND SAFETY
Hospital facilities raise unique short-term and long-term safety and health concerns that are not experienced with office complexes.
What is the effect of hospitals on the local crime rate?
Nationally, hospitals are the scene of considerable personal and property crime. The hospital cannot control the actions of patients and visitors.
A hospital serves the entire region, not just local residents. Additional people drawn to the area and likely means a higher risk of property and other crime.
Additional police are be needed, especially with a hospital in the midst of residential neighborhoods.
What would be the effect on pedestrian and motorist safety?
Whitpain lacks the infrastructure to support the pedestrian traffic drawn by core services such as hospitals. Increased pedestrian traffic on our unlit narrow roads, mostly lacking sidewalks, would be an accident waiting to happen.
Hospitals draw motorists who are distracted or panicked and who are rushing to get help. Common sense would suggest that those motorists would decrease traffic safety.
What types of noise does a hospital facility produce? How loud could it be?
Hospital facilities attract noise producers such as helicopters, ambulances, delivery vehicles and traffic. Most noise sources are present 24 hours per day, 7 days per week.
A residential community such as Whitpain has a noise level of about 50 decibels. The American Speech-Language-Hearing Association defines hazardous noise as a noise level greater than 80 decibels.
|Quiet Suburban Community||50|
|General Moderate Traffic||85|
How is noise a public health and safety concern?
Many hospital facility related noises are well above the hazardous noise level. Noise not only affects hearing and the ability to get a good nights sleep but also increases blood pressure, increases breathing rate, disturbs digestion, causes upset stomach or ulcer, negatively impact a developing fetus, changes the way the heart beats, and intensifies the effects of drugs, alcohol, aging and carbon monoxide.
What about infectious waste?
The hospital cannot control the actions of patients and visitors regarding proper disposal of infected bandages, bodily excrement, blood, mucous, etc. Despite signs and appropriate receptacles, some people will litter or do what is convenient for them at the moment.
What about helicopter safety?
Hospitals are required to have a helistop. Wings Field is only one mile away. An increase in air traffic would likely reduce public safety.