Oval Advantages for Healthcare Facilities

In healthcare environments, patient safety is critically important. Oval fire extinguishers enhance patient safety in three compelling ways.

Accessibility and ADA Complance

Corridors in healthcare facilities must be wide and clear to move patients safely through the facility or, in an emergency, to a safe area in or out of the facility. To assure that corridors are always usable and accessible, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) requires that healthcare facilities be ADA compliant. 

Even more specifically, the CMS requires that “(healthcare) facilities…comply with the ADA’s requirements for protruding objects.” Objects with leading edges 27” - 80” above the floor – including fire extinguishers – cannot project more than 4” from the wall. 

Mounting a conventional fire extinguisher on a wall violates this rule. Mounting an Oval low profile fire extinguisher does not.  Whether you are building a new healthcare facility or renovating an existing one, Oval is always the best option.

Ligature Resistance

The CMS “Patient’s Rights Condition of Participation” entitles every healthcare patient to receive care in a safe setting.  Providing a safe setting is especially challenging - but even more important - when patients are in emotional distress and at risk of self-harm.

The risk of suicide in healthcare environments is serious and growing. CMS requires healthcare facilities to do everything possible to prevent it. This includes eliminating every “ligature point” where a cord or rope could be attached and used for hanging or strangulation. 

Fire extinguishers have to be provided in healthcare environments. However, their handles and mounting brackets are ligature points.  Fire extinguishers should therefore be installed in special cabinets that recess into a wall or project from the wall with smooth, sloping sides and no sharp corners. The cabinets must also have solid windowless doors and keyed locks. Only Oval offers ligature-resistant fire extinguisher cabinets while still assuring ADA compliance and accessibility. 

MRI Safety

Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) machines generate powerful magnetic fields when in use. Any object that is close by and magnetic will be affected by this field. Objects as small as a pen or as large as a chair can be picked up and pulled into the machine. When this happens, a normally harmless object is transformed into a dangerous projectile. 

Healthcare facilities that use MRI machines therefore require that any object located near a machine be certified as “MRI Safe”. Conventional fire extinguishers almost always use a steel vessel and are therefore not MRI Safe. Oval fire extinguisher use a  non-magnetic aluminum vessel. Only Oval fire extinguishers are certified and labelled as MRI Safe.