Mt. Vernon, KY (PRWEB) December 21, 2011
Rockcastle Regional Hospital has become the first hospital in Kentucky to use the sun as an energy source.
The hospital went live with a solar array on November 30, 2011, incorporating solar power into its energy management plan and reducing its reliance on the public power grid.
Rockcastle Regional Hospital CEO Stephen A. Estes says the investment fits into the hospital’s mission of creating a healthy community.
“We’ve built our organization on forward-thinking innovation. Now we’ve applied that mindset to energy management, and it creates a win-win for us and the community in the long term,” Estes said. “As corporate citizens, we feel an obligation to conserve energy, and doing so frees more resources for patient care and wellness initiatives.”
Discussions took place with several companies and Green Earth Solar of Knoxville, Tennessee was awarded the contract. Green Earth Solar started in 2006 and has completed dozens of solar projects including dairies, manufacturing facilities, restaurants, parks and residential areas, but Rockcastle Regional Hospital is their first hospital project.
Two hundred and ten solar modules have been installed on the on top of the hospital’s Outpatient Services Center. The modules will produce around 290 watts each (60.9 kW total) and will account for enough energy annually to power eight to ten homes. Kentucky Utilities will purchase the power generated.
The solar panels essentially will power the third floor of the Outpatient Services Center, which is a space that will be utilized for community wellness events. The panels will also provide an educational experience for local students.
Rockcastle Regional Hospital & Respiratory Care Center is a not-for-profit community healthcare system that operates emergency, 26-bed inpatient acute beds and outpatient acute care programs, a 93-bed long-term care program for patients dependent upon mechanical ventilation and a medical office complex. Rockcastle Regional was established in 1956 and is accredited by the Joint Commission. Rockcastle Regional has the largest respiratory staff in the state and is nationally known for excellence. Rockcastle Regional is a five-time Kentucky Hospital Association Quality Award Winner for 2006, 2008, 2009, 2010 and 2011. Visit http://www.rockcastleregional.org.