In 2015, the healthcare industry is ever-evolving. Whether adapting to the effects of the Affordable Care Act or adjusting to new science and technologies, professionals across the healthcare sector recognize the need to keep-up with the latest trends. The situation in healthcare design is no different. From layout to lighting, here are some of the top trends in healthcare design today:
Building for the Future, not the Present
Healthcare facilities, particularly hospitals, face unique design challenges. One such challenge is an uncertain future; no one knows what the healthcare landscape will look like in 20 years, but a hospital built today will be expected to keep up. As noted by Debra Levin, president and CEO of The Center for Health Design, the building (or buildings) is the single largest capital investment a healthcare organization will make.
To get the most out of their investments, healthcare organizations are designing their facilities to be adaptable to change. According to Interior Design Magazine, healthcare design firms like CannonDesign and NBBJ are experimenting, “with prefabricated construction models that are faster, cheaper, and safer to install… to standardize facilities and thus make the more accommodating of an uncertain future.”
Improving the Patient Experience
More and more often, the focus of healthcare providers is elevating the experience. Integral to patient experience is the design of the facilities. From ease-of-use to visitor comfort, design elements can make hospital visits less stressful.
Interior Design Magazine reports a trend towards mobile check-in and self-check-in options at healthcare facilities. Self-check-in kiosks not only add to the array of technology on display at any given healthcare facility, but also aids in wait-times and typically increases patient satisfaction.
As Healthcare Design Magazine notes, design can be functionally important to aid patient recovery. In settings like behavioral health and mental health, a cold, sterile design does nothing to help patients feel at-ease. As more products and design concepts become available, healthcare design professionals look to make healthcare spaces more warm and welcoming. Even something as simple as designing to optimize the natural light in a given space can reduce patients’ (and employees’) stress.
Reimagining the Cafeteria
The hospital can be a scary place, but few healthcare experiences are more widely derided than the cafeterias and the food. As noted above, healthcare design is trending towards increased patient satisfaction. If that is the end goal, the cafeteria is a good place to start.
Healthcare Design Magazine notes various tactics in redesigning the cafeteria: Clerestory windows for extra light; half-walls to create private dining spaces; and decoration like mosaic tile to change the mood from “cafeteria” to “fine-dining.”
The biggest challenge to redesigning a cafeteria, or any other high-use healthcare space, is choosing the right material. Durable and easy to maintain surfaces like the new Veneer-Art Collection from Lamin-Art are perfectly suited for high-use environments like the hospital cafeteria. A product like 978 American Walnut provides warmth, durability, and the high-end look so sought-after in contemporary healthcare design. Learn more about Veneer-Art today by visiting www.laminart.com/veneerart.Sources: