Bristol Regional Upgrades About 8,000 Light Fixtures, Makes Other Changes To Conserve Energy, Reduce Costs

Bristol Regional Medical Centeris conserving energy with a comprehensive lighting upgrade that will increase efficiency and provide valuable financial savings for the hospital.

Wellmont Health Systemhas partnered with Energy Systems Group, a national company with an office in Johnson City, to design and implement the enhanced lighting system. It will feature the upgrade or replacement of about 8,000 light fixtures at Bristol Regional to a lower-wattage bulb and electronic ballasts.

This combination provides increased illumination at a significantly lower annual operating cost.

The project will also include the installation of additional motion sensor controls, which will further reduce the amount of electrical lighting in areas that are not always occupied, such as conference rooms and mechanical and storage rooms.

"Our health system remains focused on consistently improving our operating infrastructure while reducing our carbon footprint," said Jim Moore, Wellmont's vice president of facilities. "We are also conserving resources through the recycling of the lamps and ballasts that are being replaced."

Moore estimates these initiatives will conserve about 3 million kilowatt hours of electricity every year. Those savings are the equivalent of removing 4.7 million pounds of carbon dioxide from the environment and 441 vehicles from the road, he said.

Bristol Regional is investing $750,000 in this project, of which $276,000 will be provided by the Tennessee Valley Authority. The hospital will recoup its costs within about 2 1/2 years, Moore said.

Melony Goodhand, Bristol Regional's chief operating officer and vice president of finance, said this project demonstrates the hospital's commitment to use resources wisely.

"As a community steward, we recognize the importance of finding innovative ways to keep our costs as low as possible while providing a high level of service to our patients, their loved ones and our visitors," Goodhand said. "This project is an excellent opportunity to stay on the cutting edge of technology, while creating financial savings that can be directed to other important areas of the hospital that enhance our healing environment."