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The Center for Health Design - CURRENTS Newsletter
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The Center for Health Design - Currents Newsletter

April 6, 2017

The Scoop

It's the Simple Things that Matter

How often does your day get so busy that it is done before you completed everything on your list?  I imagine it is rare for any of us to feel "caught up" as there is always more to do. We at The Center know first-hand how busy life can be.  And we've made it our mission to create tools and resources that are of value to you and accessible anytime, allowing you to be more productive with your time. To that end, we hope you will take advantage of our latest offerings and tools including: 

Our latest resources and tools provide you with knowledge that's actionable, knowledge you can quickly incorporate into your projects, along with the latest industry news to see what others are doing.

The resources and tools we provide are meant to be shared - make sure to pass them along to your team and as always, let me know what tools and resources have been helpful to you in the past, and we'll feature them in our future newsletters.

Be well,

Debra Levin, EDAC
President and CEO


Industry News Briefs


Creating A Positive First Impression with Healthcare Lobbies 

Lowly lobbies and stark, noisy waiting rooms are history. As healthcare organizations work to improve the patient experience, these spaces are evolving into destinations for education, engagement, and solace.

It’s a necessary evolution driven by a competitive market that offers more choice to patients in where they receive care and is influencing healthcare systems to view patients as customers as well as users of services. “The important element in everyone’s mind is creating a patient and a family experience that’s memorable and helps set a healthcare organization apart,” says Jocelyn Stroupe, director of healthcare interiors at CannonDesign  (Chicago). Healthcare Design, more . . .


Facility Condition and Productivity: The Maintenance Link

Maintenance and engineering managers in institutional and commercial facilities know that healthier buildings help occupants feel and work better. Now, maybe the general public will start to take note of facility conditions. 

A new Harvard study has found that the key to working better, sleeping better, and feeling better could be rooted in the design, maintenance, and operation of the buildings where we spend the majority of our time. 

The national study was conducted by researchers at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health's Center for Health and the Global Environment and SUNY Upstate Medical. It is the first to show that working in high-performing, green-certified buildings can improve employee decision-making using objective cognitive simulations. 
facilitiesnet, more ...

Consumers Fueling Outpatient Construction

The architects and construction companies who make their living designing and building healthcare facilities are bullish in their outlook on healthcare construction, despite the uncertainty surrounding healthcare policy in Washington, D.C.

When asked to forecast their business prospects, half of these construction leaders predicted “slow but steady growth,” while another third foresaw a “strong” book of business ahead. 

Only one out of 123 architects, contractors and design/build companies that participated in Modern Healthcare's 38th Annual Construction & Design Survey reported a “declining” outlook, with that lone pessimist noting the “political climate is discouraging to healthcare construction.”
 Modern Healthcare, more . . 


Using Better Light for Better Healthcare

Light plays an important role in human health and productivity, and there is no environment where these two factors are more dynamically connected than healthcare facilities. Hospitals are finding that upgrading to a modern LED lighting system can have a significant positive impact on almost every level of hospital function. Although LED lighting usually gets attention as a money-saving, energy-saving strategy—it can reduce lighting energy costs up to 70%—it can also bring measurable improvements to a facility’s performance in terms of patient recovery times, patient experience, medical staff performance, and staff job satisfaction. LED lighting may also contribute to reductions in accidents and errors; an increased sense of security for visitors and staff; and even better cleaning by maintenance staff. Those advantages can, in turn, yield financial benefits that go far beyond the cost of energy.
Building Design + Construction, more...

When it comes to traditional healthcare, patients are conditioned to a general routine for medical appointments. After checking in and flipping through a magazine in the waiting room, the consultation is followed by time-consuming, non-medical related processes that range from navigating insurance issues to scheduling additional appointments and filling prescriptions.

With the increasing trend of clinics transitioning to a patient-centric model of care, this setup is no longer the norm, due in part to an emerging space called the central care team area. The concept of this clinical hub is to co-locate information, services and resources into one location and provide a highly efficient model of care by using the space in a manner that generates revenue, improves productivity and patient satisfaction.

To successfully support a clinic’s transition to a new model of care, the central care team space design is a key factor to maximize efficient use of the clinic space. This space is an open area strategically located at the center of the clinic module where all staff is co-located. This includes physicians, medical assistants, nursing staff and tertiary care members such as social workers and dieticians.
Medical Construction & Design, more . . .


The Center’s work is made possible with the funding support of our Partner:



Interact with world class experts in emergency department design, planning and operations at the
7th annual Emergency Department Workshop!

May 9-10, 2017

The Palmer House Hilton
17 E Monroe Street
Chicago, IL 60603

This is a unique opportunity to do much more than just listen and learn:

– you’ll engage, discuss and interact with leaders from the design industry, healthcare, academia and other members of our expert facultyTheir work puts them on the forefront of today’s most promising design innovations and facility-based solutions, making their insights invaluable to anyone designing, building or renovating an emergency department.

James J Augustine, M.D., FACEP
Chair, National Clinical Governance Board, US Acute Care Solutions, Clinical Professor, Dept. Emergency Medicine, Wright State University, Vice President, ED Benchmarking Alliance

Jon Huddy, AIA, NCARB, MArch, BA Design
President Huddy HealthCare Solutions

Adam Johnson
Service Line Director,
Emergency Department
Elmhurst Hospital

James Lennon, AIA
Design Team Leader HKS Inc. Team ED

Michelle Meziere, M.D.
Associate Medical Director, Emergency Services
Elmhurst Hospital

Michael Pietrzak, MD
Strategic Initiatives Consultant HKS Inc.  

Robert F. Sharrow, AIA, ACHA, EDAC 
Senior Vice President and Principal 
Albert Kahn Associates, Inc.

Frank Zilm, D.Arch., FAIA, FACHA
Chester Dean Director of the KU Institute for Health + Wellness Design, University of Kansas School of Architecture, Design, and Planning

Learn more here.






Impact of Aging Resources Open to All

As people live longer and longer, managing the needs of the aging population is more important than ever. Medical and technological advancements are changing healthcare for the better, giving facility designers and medical professionals new ways to provide flexible models of care and help individuals age in place.

The Impact of Aging Toolbox is aimed at helping facility designers and medical professionals understand and implement the best possible solutions to support the challenges and opportunities brought about by the growing senior population.  These innovative solutions support:

  • Universal Design as Sustainable Design
  • Intergenerational Workplaces
  • Intergenerational Communities
  • Aging in Place
  • In-Home Hospitalization
  • Minimizing Transitions among Care Settings
  • Mobile Health and Telemedicine

Access Impact of Aging resources here.

In partnership with:
J+J Flooring Group



We invite you

to join us for Health Design Insights Networking Events

Come meet and connect with CHD Affiliate members and the regional healthcare design community for "Innovations in Healthcare Design" - an informal, creative presentation, (worth one EDAC/AIA credit) at 5:00 p.m., followed by wine and hors d’oeuvres.

These events are FREE to CHD Affiliate Members and Partners. Non-members can attend for a $40 donation. 

Upcoming Health Design Insights Events: 

Washington DC,
April 27, 2017

Boston, MA,
May 18, 2017

New York, NY, September 14, 2017

Stay tuned - more events to come!


Classic Resources

Free resources and tools to advance best practices and demonstrate the value of design to improve health outcomes, patient experience of care, and provider/staff satisfaction and performance. 

Universal Design Strategies: Impact of Aging Considerations Checklist
This tool is meant to support a universal design approach to environments for aging populations. Upon project completion, this tool can guide a discussion around implementing processes that align with the new design. Understanding the universal design approach can help your organization select the best strategies and design options for your project.


How the Physical Environment in a Special Care Unit Impacts Dementia Patients’ Quality of Life
Learn how the physical setting of a special care unit for dementia patients can affect behavior in both positive and negative ways as well as engage residents and foster socialization. Also covered how strategic choices of flooring surfaces, flooring transitions, and wayfinding can help create a safer environment.

The Center for Health Design is a nonprofit 501c(3) organization whose mission is to transform healthcare environments for a healthier, safer world through design research, education and advocacy. Looking for ways to support our work? Contact us.

Join our Community of Affiliates  •  Become a Pebble Partner  •  Donate
Ask Us About Volunteer Opportunities  •  Contact Us

© 2017 The Center for Health Design

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