The co-directors of our Healthcare Interiors Practice – Jocelyn Stroupe and Margi Kaminski – have authored a special feature in Medical Construction & Design on emerging trends for the May/June issue. The article, titled “Reshaping Interiors for Stronger Outcomes,” focuses on the forces driving the evolution of healthcare environments, including consumerism, consolidation and real estate alignment, staff recruitment and retention, and brand recognition.
Several CannonDesign projects are also featured in the article, including UC San Diego Health, Jacobs Medical Center, University of Minnesota Health Clinics and Surgery Center, and Northwestern Medicine, 259 East Erie. The full story can be read online starting on page 22 and in print. Here are key excerpts:
Experiential design emerges as strategy
Now more than ever, the healthcare industry is recognizing that positive experiences for patients, staff and visitors can translate to increased loyalty, higher brand value, and stronger balance sheets. Experiential design processes rely heavily on understanding who will use certain spaces and how they’ll engage those environments. This is driving health organizations and their design teams to adopt thorough user engagement efforts as part of their design process. Listening to individuals’ hopes, fears and desires for their healthcare experiences helps designers create personalized patient profiles they can design to accommodate.
Creating the healthcare workplace of the future
When it comes to workplace evolution, healthcare is behind the curve compared to other industries and thus ripe for innovation. With strategies rooted in historical precedent, it is common for health systems to have 30 to 40 percent of real estate tied up in private offices that can be vacant 70 to 90 percent of the time as staff is out meeting with patients.
Not only is this space inefficiently allocated, it’s also often not calibrated to meet the needs of new generations entering the workforce. Students graduating today and into the future are learning in team-based and collaborative care models, with advanced technology and more flexible work/life integration scenarios. They enter the workforce expecting these realities in the workplace and many health systems will need to evolve to meet their needs and recruit/retain the top talent of tomorrow.
Healthcare’s retail revolution
In providing these retail options, healthcare organizations are catering to the growing consumerism in healthcare and also providing increased levels of convenience and service for their patients, staff and their families. These one-stop-shop models help differentiate certain care providers from others and can enrich communities and enhance local brand reputation. When designed appropriately, these spaces can also be valuable sources for respite and relaxation during stressful moments in the care process.