At Buju Architects, we aim to make the care environment more comfortable for patients. The following are key aspects we explore in hospital design which can directly support a positive patient experience.
- Noise reduction – The physical care environment can play a major role in reducing noise levels to improve sleep and mood and create better pain tolerance. A way to reduce stress due to noise can be by avoiding shared headwalls and providing more space between patient room doors.
- Improved communication – The discharge process and communication can be enhanced by creating care spaces where instructions can be easily and comfortably conveyed to patients and their families. These can include places where staff and families meet in an informal yet acoustically private setting outside of patient rooms or formal consultation rooms where more serious discussions can take place. Conversations regarding treatment can be more fully comprehended in a relaxed care setting created with comfortable furniture and furnishings.
- Staff support – Supporting the emotional state of caregivers to best deal with difficult situations is an important aspect of creating the best patient care experience. Break rooms can permit staff to be emotional in need, especially in high-stress departments. Additional facilities such as staff lounges with natural light, views, and exterior access, as well as on-site fitness centres, allow caregivers spaces to destress.
- Stress reduction – Introducing natural light and views of nature can reduce the perception of pain. When this can’t be accomplished naturally, the use of art or digital monitors showing nature and artificial lighting can be very effective. An additional approach to reducing stress in the hospital environment is by having clear, coherent circulation with an orientation to the outdoors. This can be reinforced by colour and finishes that designate which corridors are public ways versus staff areas. It is increasingly becoming more complex to meet the expectations of patients and families as each generation is considered. The improvement of patient care and family experience via design in all healthcare settings is only going to gain importance as consumers become more educated on their choices.
We at Buju Architects, want to design to enrich the lives of patient, caregivers, and staff in healthcare organisations.