When built smart, hospitals have the capacity to function efficiently, deliver quality care and develop invaluable trust with patients and families. The Korte Company recently published a healthcare construction infographic that showcases several traits of well-designed hospitals; this post expands upon a few of those characteristics to show how they can enhance visitors’ overall experiences.
Safety must be a priority in healthcare facilities. In order to retain patients and staff, they should constantly feel secure and welcome. Lighting is one design element that is not always appreciated — but when insufficient, it can hinder the competence of daily operations. Additionally, parking lots, entryways and the general exterior of the building should be illuminated at all times for easy navigation. When investing in hospital lighting, you can save by selecting the most energy-efficient solution.
Because the purpose of healthcare facilities is to restore patients’ wellbeing, it’s imperative that the interior environments are sanitary — the best way to enable this is to use resources that are simple to clean and maintain.
Forward-thinking hospital design is kind to the environment. For example, incorporating composite wood panels and distinctive textured laminate finishes as alternatives to solid wood products is a smart solution to create a better healthcare environment.
But sustainability extends far beyond wood composites and the materials you select. It includes everything from the orientation of your building and the building systems you invest in to strategic planning in the design process and even educational materials you post throughout your facility. The key is to define your sustainable goals and incorporate them from the start of your project.
Calming elements rooted in evidence-based design
Decades of research have been poured into evidence-based design, demonstrating that smarter design improves not only facility environments but also patient outcomes, worker happiness and overall productivity.
Aesthetically pleasing design makes a significant impact. Sleek furnishings reflect the relevancy, achievement and expertise of the facility and its staff. A hospital’s interior features should assist in the subtle transfer of trust to patients. The look of waiting rooms and lobbies should be carefully crafted, as this is the area in which patients and visitors will first gauge the atmosphere. Individual patients’ rooms and consulting rooms deserve the same attention to detail; they should try to alleviate patients’ stress and fears as much as possible. Cabinets and countertops can be upgraded with heat transfer foils, which present soothing, clean lines and beautifully textured surfaces without breaking the budget.
Start with a smarter design
Smart healthcare design starts with holistic planning to construct a building that is secure, sustainable and calming. Our Better Hospital Floor Plans infographic touches on characteristics beyond interior design elements. We’ve also published a step-by-step guide to achieve a project that solves facility challenges and addresses practical problems of delivering care.