With Africa’s population expected to double by 2050, the continent is faced with major challenges. The healthcare infrastructure deficit is but one of these. Saint-Gobain Africa caters for current and future needs in healthcare in both the private and public sector.

According to the International Finance Corporation (IFC), a member of the World Bank Group, between 550 000 and 650 000 new hospital beds will need to be supplied in the next ten years across Africa. 

Associated demographic challenges influence the outlook in other ways too:

  • Africa has a relatively young population with a higher demand for quality (healthcare included).
  • There is a need for universal access to quality infrastructure and services.
  • Rapid urbanisation is increasing the pressure on the larger cities. 
  • Costs for the provision of basic healthcare services are rising.
  • The policy and regulatory landscape is changing.
  • Socio-economic factors play a big role.

The above challenges present a major opportunity to develop and establish more suitable, responsive and flexible healthcare facilities that will cater for current and future needs, in both in the private and the public sector.


Saint-Gobain Africa understands healthcare facilities as not merely buildings that accommodate medical staff and patients. Healthcare facilities have a role to play in the holistic healing process and in the wellbeing of healthcare professionals.

When looking to build new, retrofit or renovate healthcare facilities, Saint-Gobain Africa’s solutions meet and enhance performance requirements while ensuring cost-efficiency and functionality: 

Full operation of these facilities, which generally entails around the clock, ongoing occupancy
Optimally functional operation without major disruptions; and responsiveness to ongoing and changing healthcare requirements. Saint-Gobain Africa provides comfort and wellbeing in healthcare facilities.

The building sector has tremendous potential for energy savings, provided the objective of low energy consumption for any new construction project is considered from inception.

With Saint-Gobain Africa's solutions, the performance of the envelope (floors, walls, ceilings and services) of the building can be optimised. These include: 

  • Drywall systems that provide enhanced thermal performance to the building envelope, which supports the thermal comfort of the occupants. The thermal conductivity of plasterboard is up to four times less than that of brickwork.
  • Solar control glass and window films that can either let sun radiation enter the building or block it out.
  • Interior and exterior insulation materials, such as mineral wools, that help to reduce heat losses or gains.
  • ETICS systems that provide active insulation by minimising heatflow through walls and around windows, doors and other openings while cutting energy consumption and CO² emissions from heating and cooling.
  • Vapour control membranes that prevent humidity from entering the building.
  • Renders that help reduce humidity transfer from the outside and improve insulation.
  • Bituminous waterproofing roof solutions with heat reflective properties.
  • Tile adhesives, primers, grouts and cementitious finishes that prevent heatflow. 
  • Warm edge spacer bars to improve the thermal performance of glazing units.
  • Waterproofing roof solutions that are solar reflective, for cooler roofs and an overall reduction in a building’s heat gain.


Noise is a real challenge for healthcare facilities. It can come from external or internal sources (medical equipment, staff, visitors and vehicular traffic). By disrupting the quality of sleep and rest of patients, noise can affect their recovery time.

For caregivers, noise can affect memory and the cognitive functions necessary to process complex information, particularly in the case of teamwork or situations requiring effective verbal communication. Acoustic comfort in hospitals can help reduce the stress levels of medical staff and patients.

Saint-Gobain Africa offers a wide portfolio of acoustic solutions that effectively reduce the noise level of healthcare buildings. These include: 

  • Materials that provide sound insulation from external noise, such as glass in windows and facades.
  • Insulating materials that can effectively attenuate noise, such as specially designed plasterboards and drywall systems, acoustic ceilings and glasswool insulation, all of  which help to reduce airborne and impact noises inside the building.
  • Absorbing materials that reduce reverberation within a space and enhance acoustic ambience. This can be achieved through Saint-Gobain acoustic ceilings or wallpanels, or a combination of the two.
  • ETICS systems that improve thermal insulation and acoustic values as an alternative to conventional building systems.
  • Acoustic drainage systems that dampen the sound of drainage water and transit.
  • Duct insulation solutions that reduce noise from HVAC systems.
  • Felts for floating floors that reduce impact sound from floor traffic.


Hospitals and other healthcare facilities are places in which many sources of chemical and other emissions are present, which can contaminate indoor air quality.

Saint-Gobain Africa offers a wide range of solutions to improve the quality of indoor air in these facilities. These include: 

  • Lightweight systems for wall, ceiling and floors, specifically tailored to prevent moisture retention in moisture-prone healthcare spaces, such as bathrooms and kitchens.
  • Plasterboards and wall coverings that help purify indoor air by scavenging certain volatile organic compounds (VOCs), such as formaldehyde.
  • Glass, an inert material. 
  • Warm edge spacer bars to stop condensation and prevent the formation of mould and bacteria in between glazing units.
  • Duct insulation to prevent condensation and mould.
  • Tile grouting adhesives and flooring solutions with low CO₂ emissions.
  • Chemical-resistant epoxy adhesive and grout for interior and exterior use where chemical resistance and impermeability is required (laboratories and ablution areas).
  • Mortar for joints resistant to mould, bacteria, algae and chemical attack.
  • Sound-absorbing ceiling systems intended for environments where there is a risk of slight contamination and where regular cleaning is required, such as canteens and laboratories.


Natural light and specific room colours promote the physical and psychological healing process and fitness.

Saint-Gobain Africa offers a wide range of solutions to improve visual comfort in healthcare facilities. These include: 

  • Glass or window films that allow access to daylight and views through windows, doors, partitions and roofs while minimising heat ingress and heat loss.
  • Interior products, such as wall coverings, ceilings or flooring, that can contribute to the distribution of daylight and to the aesthetic of a space.
  • Surface-mounted services and pipework can accommodated within or behind Saint-Gobain Africa's light-weight wall and floor systems to maintain clean, aesthetic building lines.

Further information: Fire, safety, security and maintenance requirements in the healthcare sector. 


The time patients spend in hospital can be reduced by 30% by reducing noise levels to allow better recovery. This can be achieved by applying superior acoustic walls, ceilings and windows, as well as high performance drainage systems.