(a)  All material and equipment, including conductors, controls, and signaling devices, shall be installed in compliance with applicable sections of North Carolina State Building Code, Electrical Code as found in Rule .6102(1) of this Subchapter.  A written record of performance tests on electrical systems and equipment shall show compliance with applicable codes and standards.

(b)  The main switchboard shall be located in an area separate from plumbing and mechanical equipment and shall be accessible to authorized persons only.  The main switchboard shall be located in a dry, ventilated space free of corrosive or explosive fumes, gases, or any combustible material.

(c)  Panelboards serving normal lighting and appliance circuits shall be located on the same floor as the circuits they serve.  Panelboards for emergency system critical branch and equipment system branch circuits shall be located on each floor that has service requirements.  Only panels for emergency system life safety branch circuits may serve floors other than the floor that the panel is located on.

(d)  Lighting shall be provided as follows:

(1)           Approaches to buildings and parking lots, and all occupied spaces within buildings shall have fixtures for lighting;

(2)           Patient rooms shall have general lighting and night lighting.  A reading light shall be provided for each patient.  At least one night light fixture in each patient room shall be controlled at the room entrance.  All light controls in patient areas shall be quiet-operating.  Lighting for special care bed areas shall permit staff observation of the patient but shall minimize glare;

(3)           Nursing unit corridors shall have general illumination with provisions for reducing light levels at night; and

(4)           Consideration shall be given to controlling lighting intensity to prevent harm to the patients' eyes (i.e., retina damage in premature infants and cataracts due to ultraviolet light).

(e)  Receptacles shall be provided as follows:

(1)           Each operating room and delivery room shall have at least eight 120 volt duplex receptacles;

(2)           In areas where mobile X-ray equipment is intended to be used, single receptacles marked for X-ray equipment only shall be installed;

(3)           Neonatal Level I nurseries shall have a minimum of one 120 volt duplex receptacle located on each nursery wall connected to the critical branch of the emergency electrical system in addition to the receptacles for each bassinet required by Section 517-18 of the North Carolina State Building Code Volume IV;

(4)           Emergency department examination and treatment rooms shall have a minimum of two 120 volt duplex receptacles located convenient to the head of each bed. Trauma rooms shall have a minimum of three 120 volt duplex receptacles convenient to the head of each bed;

(5)           120 volt duplex receptacles for general use shall be installed 50 feet (15.2 m.) apart in all corridors and within 25 feet (7.6 m.) of corridor ends; and

(6)           Inhalation anesthetizing locations and other areas where patients are intended to have a direct electrical path to the heart muscle shall be equipped with an isolated power system, approved by the authority having jurisdiction including the following requirements:

(A)          The line isolation monitor shall be visible to attending staff while caring for the patient;

(B)          No more than one patient may be served by an isolated power system serving emergency power receptacles;

(C)          Transformers shall not be located over any patient bed location; and

(D)          Branch circuit wiring for isolated power systems shall have a dielectric constant of less than 3.5.

(f)  Emergency electrical service shall be provided as follows:

(1)           To provide electricity during an interruption of normal electrical service, a generating set or sets located on the facility site capable of carrying the full emergency load shall be installed;

(2)           Fuel shall be stored on the site in sufficient quantity to provide for not less than 24 hours of operation;

(3)           Where the generator sets are in close proximity to the heating plant, the emergency generator fuel storage capacity may be included in the standby fuel storage tank for the heating burners when the fuels are the same;

(4)           All devices, switches, receptacles, etc., connected to the automatically started generator shall be distinctively identified so that personnel can easily select which device is expected to operate during a failure of the normal source of power; and

(5)           As a minimum, the following areas shall be connected to the essential electrical system:

(A)          Task lighting connected to the critical branch of the emergency system to serve boiler rooms, main switchgear rooms, electrical closets, fire pump rooms, central fire alarm and control rooms, central telephone switchboard room; and

(B)          Heating equipment and associated controls to provide heating for patient care areas shall be connected to the equipment system.

(g)  A nurses' calling system shall be provided as follows:

(1)           Each patient room shall be served by at least one calling station for two-way voice communication.  Each bed shall be provided with a call device.  Two call devices serving adjacent beds may be served by one calling station.  Calls shall activate a visible signal in the corridor at the patient's door, in the clean workroom, in the soiled workroom, and at the nursing station of the nursing unit.  In multi-corridor nursing units, additional visible signals shall be installed at corridor intersections.  In rooms containing two or more calling stations, indicating lights shall be provided at each station.  Nurses calling systems at each calling station shall be equipped with an indicating light which remains lighted as long as the voice circuit is operating;

(2)           An emergency calling station shall be provided at each patient-use toilet, bath, sitz bath, and shower.  This station shall be accessible to a patient lying on the floor.  Inclusion of a pull cord approved by the authority having jurisdiction will satisfy this standard.  The emergency call system shall be designed so that a signal activated at a patient's calling station will initiate a visible and audible signal distinct from the regular nurse calling system that can be turned off only at the patient calling station.  The signal shall activate an enumerator panel at the nurse station, and a visible signal in the corridor at the room;

(3)           In areas such as special care where patients are under constant visual surveillance, the nurses' call system may be limited to a bedside button or station that activates a signal readily seen at the control station; and

(4)           A staff emergency assistance system for staff to summon additional assistance shall be provided in each operating, delivery, recovery, emergency examination or treatment area, and in special care units, nurseries, special procedure rooms, stress-test areas, triage, out-patient surgery admission and discharge areas, and areas for mental patients, including seclusion and security rooms, anterooms and toilet rooms serving them, communal toilet and bathing facility rooms, therapy, exam, and treatment rooms.  This system shall annunciate at the nurse station with back-up to another staffed area from which assistance can be summoned.


History Note:        Authority G.S. 131E-79;

Eff. January 1, 1996.