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Each visitor—whether he or she is a patient, family member, or healthcare provider—enters the medical facility with a personal reality; each has his or her own level of “knowing,” and different levels invoke different needs. Some visitors—a first-time visitor who has never been in a hospital or has never had a healthcare problem—may not realize how different and confusing a healthcare facility is compared to a shopping mall or airport (see Box One). For these people, the hospital may be more foreign than a distant country. The visitor lacks experience, and this can lead to great confusion. Some visitors, aware of their ignorance, don’t want to know how to...
By Barbara J. Huelat, AAHID, ASID, IIDAA Position Paper for The Center for Health Design's Environmental Standards Council, 2007 1.0