The Benefits of Building a Medical Facility with ICF Construction

Medical building construction

Fox Blocks insulated concrete forms (ICFs) create medical buildings that are safe, energy-efficient, durable, healthy, comfortable, and quiet. Fox Blocks ICFs are also quick and simple to install; saving contractors time and money.

Medical facilities (hospitals, assisted care homes, outpatient clinics, and psychiatric facilities) built with insulated concrete forms (ICFs) provide patients and medical staff all the critical elements for a modern medical building. ICF medical buildings are safe, healthy, and quiet. ICF medical buildings are also energy-efficient, durable, resilient, low-maintenance, and quick to install; four qualities that lower short-term and long-term expenses of a medical facility.

Safe and Disaster-Resistant ICF Design for Medical Building Construction


Fire-Resistant ICF Medical Facilities

An ICF wall system for a medical facility contributes towards passive fire protection within the wall systems. Passive fire protection limits the spread of smoke and fire and can lessen the danger to the occupants and the damage to the property. Passive design is also essential to protecting the structural components and preventing the collapse of a medical building during a fire emergency.

Fox Blocks ICFs are an excellent option for passive firewall protection. The 6-inch Fox Blocks ICFs achieve an ASTM E119 fire rating of four hours (double the two-hour requirement), an ASTM E84 value for flame speed lower than 25, and smoke development lower than 450.

Hurricane and Tornado-Resistant ICF Medical Buildings

A medical building constructed with ICF walls protects the building and its occupants from high winds during severe weather events. An ideal choice for a hurricane- or tornado-resistant wall construction is Fox Block ICFs.

  • Medical Buildings constructed with Fox Blocks ICFs maintain their integrity during severe tornado winds of over 200 mph.
  • Fox Blocks ICFs withstand projectile debris traveling more than 100 mph.

Flood-Resistant ICF Medical Buildings

The design of medical buildings in flood hazard zones must protect against storm surge, tide, and excessive rain. Flood-resistant design includes elevated structures, materials that can get wet, and design assemblies that easily dry when exposed to moisture. ICFs have all the critical elements of a flood-resistant wall. Constructing a medical building with ICF’s ensures a durable and strong structure that can stand up to water intrusion before and after a flood.

A superb choice for building an ICF medical building is the Fox Blocks solid continuous monolithic concrete walls. Fox Blocks walls are moisture-resistant and permeable (perm rating below 1.0). Fox Blocks ensure moisture that infiltrates the wall system, dries out and won’t move on to nearby materials. Fox Blocks reinforced concrete construction also does not degrade when wet and maintains its original shape and integrity during and after a flood.

Earthquake-Resistant ICF Medical Buildings

Earthquake-resistant ICF medical buildings create shear walls that extend the entire height and all sides of the building. ICF shear walls, like those built with Fox Blocks, are anchored to the foundation with steel reinforcing bars. When an earthquake occurs, this design effectively resists intense sideways (lateral) in-plane forces that push the top of the wall in one direction while the bottom remains either stationary or is forced in the other direction (racking the wall).

The Excellent Indoor Environmental Quality (IEQ) of ICF Medical Buildings


ICF medical facilities, like those constructed with Fox Blocks, provide superb IEQ because they are quiet, lack volatile organic compounds (VOCs), and are air- and moisture-resistant.

  • Fox Block ICF walls of medical buildings promote patient dignity and privacy by ensuring that patients and the exam rooms are soundproof. Fox Blocks ICFs has a high ASTM E90 Sound Transmission Classification (STC) rating of more than 50 that creates an exterior and interior wall system with high sound reduction.
  • Fox Blocks ICFs are healthy because they do not containVOC. VOC are harmful because they cause eye, nose, and throat irritations, nausea, headaches, and damage to the liver, kidney, and central nervous system.
  • Fox Blocks ICF medical facilities are also healthy because they are air- and moisture-resistant, which is essential to preventing moisture accumulation in the wall system. Moisture in the wall system leads to unhealthy mold.

Energy-Efficient ICF Medical Building Design


ICF construction contributes towards a tight-building envelope and an energy-efficient medical building. Vital components of an energy-efficient medical building are continuous insulation (CI), an effective air- and moisture barrier, and high thermal mass building materials. CI and an air- and moisture barrier prevents thermal bridging, raises the effective R-value and stops condensation. High thermal mass building materials absorb and store heat energy and stabilize temperature shifts within the medical building by slowing down heat transfer. Fox Blocks provide all these elements and are an ideal wall system for building an energy-efficient medical building.

  • The high thermal mass of Fox Blocks ICFs has an R-value of 23 that surpasses the ASHRAE/ANSI 90.1 energy code requirements.
  • Fox Blocks are a solid continuous monolithic concrete wall (perm rating less than 1.0) with two layers of continuous interior and exterior expanded polystyrene (EPS) insulation. The concrete and EPS provide air and vapor barriers on both sides of the wall, which prevents moisture accumulation within the wall system.

Medical Buildings Constructed with ICF are Durable

Fox Blocks ICF medical building’s wall systems are durable because they are moisture- and termite-resistant.

  • Fox Blocks are Moisture-Resistant: Fox Blocks’ solid continuous monolithic concrete wall controls moisture intrusion and prevents the growth of mold, which can degrade a medical building’s integrity.
  • Fox Blocks Provide Termite Resistant: Because Fox Blocks lack organic material, they are less susceptible to termites. But, for waterproofing and complete termite protection, Fox Blocks recommends Polyguard Products, Inc. 650 XTM or 650 XTP membranes.

Fox Blocks ICFs are Quick to Install


Fox Blocks ICF wall systems save money during medical building construction because Fox Blocks is an all in one wall system reduces the construction schedule, which makes installation easy and fast. Fox Block wall assembly combines five steps into one, including structure, insulation, vapor retarder, air barrier, and full height furring attachment.

Fox Blocks ICF medical buildings provide patients and medical staff a safe, healthy, and quiet environment. Fox Blocks ICF medical buildings also lower short-term and long-term expenses because they are energy-efficient, durable, low-maintenance, and quick to install.