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Kyabirwa Surgical Center


Kyabirwa, Uganda


Dr. Michael Marin


Department of Surgery

Mount Sinai

New York

A prototypical ambulatory surgical facility, first of its kind built in Kyabirwa, Uganda. With a clearly established framework, the ambulatory surgery center can be duplicated in other parts of the developing world with no basic utilities available and meets all technical requirements for medical surgical facilities.

Kyabirwa surgical facility has 2 operating rooms and all necessary supporting spaces. This 8,000 sf building is designed with climate specific passive design concepts. Grid power is available only for about 30% of the time. Roof mounted solar array with battery storage produces 100% of all uninterrupted power required for mission critical operations in the OR and rest of the facility. Solar arrays, inverters and batteries are monitored by software that recommends usage times for high electric draw appliances like autoclave, washer and dryer.

Solar array canopy above the roof provides critical shading for the building roof from solar heat gain. Shape of the roof is designed for stacked ventilation with vents at the top of the sloped roofs and ceiling fans provide much needed air movement inside occupied spaces for latent heat removal. A simple energy efficient negative air pressure system relies on strategically located exhaust fans to prevent soiled air from entering the Operating Rooms.

A metered gray water management system captures 100% of water required for toilet flushing. Roof runoff is filtered and stored in underground tanks and pumped to gravity tanks as needed.

Fifty local skilled laborers built the facility in 24 months using all locally sourced materials. Building structure is reinforced slab, beam and column. Local gravel for concrete, local mud for brick infills and local artisan made 12,000 handmade tiles to clad the exterior of the building. A newly laid 27 km long fiber optic link allows the medical team there to communicate seamlessly with the medical team at Mount Sinai, NY for vital medical training and medical support.

AIA New York Design Award 2020

AIA Healthcare Design Award 2020


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