Laura Johnson Aged Care Home

The Laura Johnson Aged Care project was an $18.5 million, 75 bed nursing home extension in Mt Isa, Queensland, offering both respite and permanent residents varying levels of care.
Delivering a facility to meet nursing home residents’ diverse care requirements

The new facility catered for both the medical and recreational requirements of a nursing home. First and foremost, the residents within a nursing home have a range of medical needs that could require immediate medical attention which meant communication systems quickly connecting residents to staff underpinned the design of the buildings. Upgraded lifestyle and recreational facilities was also a key consideration for the project to ensure residents were able to maintain active, social and enjoyable lifestyles, in the comfort of reliable air conditioning to counter the warm Queensland climate.

Considerate designs from an experienced team

The DMA team ensured the facility was equipped to withstand the threat of a power outage with reliable back-up power, residents were closely connected to staff through an all-encompassing communication and nurse-call system and the centre was efficiently cooled without losing valuable floor or wall space. Specifically:

  • Life-saving devices and communication alert systems require uninterrupted electricity supply, so a key task for our team was to design a backup power alternative in the event of mains power being lost. A backup generator was provided and we facilitated the upgrade and installation of a new pad-mount transformer by Ergon Energy. Surge diverters were installed as a form of lightning protection, to reduce the risk of the building being damaged by a lightning strike. The security and communications equipment throughout the nursing home has a UPS (Uninterruptible Power Supply), so the nurse-call functions and intruder detection facilities are always functional.
  • We designed a complex communication alert system throughout the nursing home. Nurse-call buttons were located in every bedroom and communal area. The residents’ bedrooms contain nurse-call pendants and pull chords were located in the ensuites. The nursing home was also designed with an intruder detection system to keep the location and residents secure and safe.
  • With the climate in Mt Isa consistently hot, air conditioning was essential to maintain comfort for residents. The resident wing of the building was cooled via a heat recovery variable refrigerant volume (HRV/VRF) air conditioning system. This system allowed for wall space to be left free, resulting in a much longer lifespan. The office areas of the building had a Standard Reverse Cycle VRV/VRF air conditioning system.
Safe and comfortable care and living

DMA Engineers was tasked with designing essential services to help lift quality of life for residents in an aged care facility purpose built to suit Mt Isa’s climate. The end-product was a nursing home that was functional and comfortable. Our design considerations not only provided a safe environment and enhanced lifestyle, they provided 24/7 functionality.

Client: Coffey

Location: Mt Isa, Qld

Sector: Aged Care

Services: Electrical, Mechanical, Fire Protection

Status: Completed

Project Value: $18.5M

Year Completed: 2014

For more information on this project, please contact us.