Case Studies

National Institutes of Health

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The NIH is the primary federal agency responsible for conducting and supporting medical research. It encompasses 27 separate institutes and centers, including the National Cancer Institute, the National Institute of Mental Health, and the National Library of Medicine. NIH manages almost 17 million square feet of facilities, including laboratories, research institutions, medical schools and hospitals. To effectively support its research activities, these facilities must be fully operational 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.


In order to support proactive management and maintenance of its facilities, the NIH wanted to establish a uniform process for assessing building conditions and estimating the cost of repairs and renewals across its portfolio, and of keeping this information up to date. Ultimately, the agency wanted this data to feed directly into its capital budgeting process.


NIH selected VFA to provide both the facility asset management software and facility assessment services needed to support the agency in proactive facility planning and management. NIH and VFA developed a 3 year timeline for a single team of assessors to complete condition assessments of the entire NIH facility portfolio. VFA.facility software became the central repository for all assessment information, providing the foundation for ongoing analysis and planning. VFA also worked with NIH to create a scoring system to prioritize facility projects, applying a value and weight based on various organizational criteria.


Today, the NIH has a strategic process for evaluating the condition of its facilities, setting benchmarks and achieving established standards of building quality throughout its portfolio. The agency can prioritize projects to create optimal capital budget and develop a clear, defensible case for funding requests.

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