VESCOM of the Netherlands has introduced on the regional market what it claims to be a world-first in the wall-coverings segment. The revolutionary concept for hygiene – Silvadur – is targeted specifically at the healthcare industry and was launched at Hospital Build 2010 in Dubai, last month.
With the technology, the company says, it has added a new dimension to its wall-coverings. Vescom wall-coverings are washable, durable and almost maintenance free, according to managing director (UAE and Oman) Sameer Jamthe. “With the introduction of Silvadur, we have added another dimension – antimicrobial protection. The combination of these advantages makes Silvadur an ideal wall solution for hospital, clinics and laboratories. The product is effective, durable and versatile,” he states.
He continues: “Till date, the healthcare industry has faced problems with aesthetics and maintenance of walls, not to forget hygiene – an important aspect for hospitals. The conventional solution is paint, but using paint increases the maintenance cycle, which affects the operation of hospitals on a regular basis, while the smell of paint is also an issue.”
Silvadur is a silver-based antimicrobial preservative that uses a patented delivery system to transport and secure the silver to the surface. This novel system controls the release of the silver to avoid discoloration and early silver exhaustion typical of silver systems. When incorporated into industrial and household materials during the manufacturing process, Silvadur prevents the growth of bacteria, mould and mildew, to offer antimicrobial protection, durability, freshness and a feeling of well-being.
Vescom’s range of wall-coverings are now available with breakthrough Silvadur antimicrobial technology, which destroys germs and odours at the point of contact.
“Vescom with silver is unlike any other antimicrobial product. This patented, breakthrough technology offers a long-lasting, natural way to destroy pathogenic microorganisms. It is an ideal solution for environments that require high hygienic standards, such as hospitals, hotels, senior care facilities, restaurants and retail.
“This patented technology (by Rohm and Haas/Dow) has been tested thoroughly and is extremely effective against the most common pathogens. The controlled release of silver (figure 1) is what makes Silvadur’s process effective in controlling and seriously degrading organisms and bacteria, including, but not limited to, MRSA, E Coli, Staphylococcus aureus and many types of fungi (figures 2 and 3),” he explains. “It’s safe, natural and non-toxic. And above all, silver is approved by the US Food and Drug Administration as an antibacterial agent, which works to destroy bacteria and more without any harm to people, pets or the environment.”
Other benefits of the Silvadur treatment include durability, because it constantly replenishes itself to retain antimicrobial protection to endure for the typical life of the product. Even through repeated cleaning, Silvadur maintains its function. It is versatile because this treatment can be applied to any wall-covering during manufacture without affecting the colour and texture, Jamthe says.
Speaking about its use in the Middle East, he says: “While using wall coverings in the healthcare industry is still a new concept as far as the Middle East is concerned, in Europe and the US, they are used extensively in hundreds of hospitals, operating theatres and laboratories due to their advantages.”
However, there is increased awareness now in the region of these benefits, he says, adding, “We look to capturing the Middle East market. We have already completed projects in the Middle East such as King Khaled University Hospital in Riyadh, and Omoma Hospital and Royal Hayat Hospital in Kuwait City. Our wall-coverings have been specified for Al Mafraq Hospital, Al Ain, Franco-Emirien Hospital, Abu Dhabi, and Dubai University Hospital in Dubai Healthcare City.”
He says the company is convinced that the regional market will respond to the benefits associated with its product and that consultants and designers will specify its wall-coverings for future healthcare projects.
Vescom, founded in 1971, specialises in the development, production and distribution of high-quality contract wall-coverings and fabrics. It is a market leader in the international contract market.
Vescom wall-coverings are available in a variety of colours, textures and designs. “Thanks to a varied and comprehensive range of colours and designs, our products greatly enhance the appearance of every possible interior in the contract market. With more than 100 designs in 850 colours, our wall-coverings are able to create precisely the right atmosphere in any room. Some of the wall-coverings are subtle and subdued and blend in seamlessly in the room while others are more expressive and stand out through a subtle mix of shapes and textures. We have floral and animal hide patterns and graphic and geometric patterns, as well as designs with a ‘see-through’ effect.
“We also have Vescom XL which gives the option of displaying whatever images the client requires on their walls. We use our existing range of wall-coverings as a print substrate. This ensures that the chosen image or design has all the technical and flame-retardant qualities it needs for commercial use,” he adds.
The standard vinyl product range of Vescom includes wall-coverings with a Tedlar PVF film, which offers extra resistance to the corrosive action of chemicals and solvents. At the same time, Tedlar offers a durable protection against dirt, bacteria and discolouration.
“Our wall-coverings are wear-resistant, fire safe, colourfast, easy to clean and usually last 10 to 15 years. The fact that no additional investments are required throughout the lifespan of the product, makes our products, cheaper than alternatives such as fibreglass coated with paint or paint which require frequent maintenance,” he states.
“Vescom stands for quality both in technology and design. A variety of designs and durable materials form the basis of our exclusive and original collections. With this, we optimally satisfy the aesthetic and functional requirements of offices, hotels and care institutions as well as shops, schools and airports. That is the reason Vescom is the first choice amongst architects, interior decorators and installers,” he concludes.