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

April 20, 2017

The Scoop

In the Blink of an Eye

It's hard to believe that we are already finishing up April and heading into May. The Center has many upcoming events including webinars, an Evidence-Based Design Journal Club, the Washington, D.C. Health Design Insights Networking Event, our seventh annual Emergency Department Workshop and the first-ever Content Collaborative on ambulatory care design. You can view all of our upcoming events on our website calendar.

In an effort to stay on top of industry trends, we continue to add tools and resouces to our current Topic Toolboxes.  We just recently added Lessons Learned and Related Resources to our Impact of Aging Toolkit that is sponsored by J+J flooring Group. 

In the Insights and Solutions section of our website, you will find resources and tools that will 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. Here's just a few of our recent additions:

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


Serving the Millennial Patient 

In 2014, Price Waterhouse Coopers’ Health Research Institute conducted its annual survey of 1,000 consumers and industry experts to identify the top health industry issues for the coming year. One of its key findings was that millennials define “benefits” more broadly — emphasizing work-life balance over simple health benefits — than do members of previous generations. This expectation means that insurers and health care organizations need to work more closely with millennials to support and enhance their well-being and need to look at new mobile technologies that can create personalized, real-time support and feedback. 
H&HN more . . .


Children's Hospital of San Antonio Designed for Growth

San Antonio ranks as the second largest city in Texas, and it’s still growing. In 2016, it was home to one of the largest population increases in the nation. Still, it was the only major city in Texas without a comprehensive children’s hospital. Instead, a host of smaller facilities served the region, including the 100-bed Santa Rosa Children’s Hospital, founded in 1959 by the Sisters of Charity of the Incarnate Word inside Santa Rosa Hospital’s downtown campus and operated by Christus Santa Rosa Health System. Over the years, the facility partnered with UT Health Science Center to deliver pediatric medicine, but as the region’s population increased and the need for more specialized care and equipment grew, Christus sought an opportunity to expand its children’s services.

In April 2012, the hospital board approved a $135 million, 800,000-square-foot project expansion and renovation of the current campus, turning the existing adult and pediatric hospital into a dedicated children’s hospital. Healthcare Design, more...


The Transformation Imperative  

The need to contain costs and keep consumers happy will drive innovation. One year of healthcare spending can buy 15 iPhones. Or, it can buy over 3,000 gallons of milk.

Or, if you want to look at it in relative terms, U.S. healthcare spending, which in 2015 hit nearly $10,000 for every person in the country, was 29% higher than the next most expensive country, Luxembourg.

No matter how you size it up, what the U.S. spends each year on healthcare is a lot of money. That’s why there’s near-universal agreement that, no matter what happens in Washington over the next few years, the pressure on healthcare providers to transform the delivery system into one that achieves better outcomes at lower costs in a more patient- and consumer-friendly way will only grow more intense.

As that pressure builds, a whole new “innovation” industry within healthcare has come into existence. It includes startups looking to help existing providers improve the efficiency of their operations; the quality, safety and outcomes of their care; and their patient or customer relations. Modern Healthcare, more . . .


Designs that Heal

Beginning in my final year of college, I worked at an inpatient behavioral health clinic where kids who were diagnosed with mental illness, ranging from schizophrenia to bipolar disorder, lived. My job was to hang out with the kids, serve them meals, and keep them safe. Most days passed somewhat uneventfully. However, I noticed one thing that did seem to affect the mood of everyone there: the environment.

The rooms were barren and beige. Common spaces were stained and clogged with bulky, heavy furniture. Windows were located 15 feet up the wall so you couldn’t see outside, and the doors were always locked. The environment looked like it was created as an afterthought—just a space to hold some kids who were going through a difficult time. The space provided no distraction or happiness for them.

After working there for a few years during and after college, I wondered, “Could the environment better support their needs?”
Healthcare Design, more . . 

The internationally acclaimed CODAawards celebrate the design projects that most successfully integrate commissioned art into interior, architectural, or public spaces. The awards honor the individuals and the teams whose collective imaginations create the public and private spaces that inspire us every day. Submit projects for consideration by May 31, 2017.  codawrx, more . . .

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



Interact with world class experts at the 7th annual Emergency Department Workshop! 
Their 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.

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.





New Tool Supports Population Health and POE Goals

The Center has just published a new tool -  the Outpatient and Community Health Center Facility Evaluation Tool.  This tool, created with the support of The Kresge Foundation, is organized around four main goals to enable population health:

Healthy Behaviors

Physical Environment

Socio-Economic Factors

Clinical Care 

Intended to support both the design and post-occupancy evaluation of built projects with respect to population health goals, a PDF version of the tool is available to all here. 

In partnership with:
The Kresge Foundation




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!

2017 Healthcare Symposium

Inaugural forum for advancement in healthcare facilities: collaboration to create a healthy indoor environment that supports patient healing.

Get Early Bird Savings by
May 1, 2017

More information and registration here.

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. 

The Center's Job Board

The Center for Health Design's Job Board is an employment resource for those seeking positions in healthcare architecture, design, facility planning or other related fields. Browse the positions currently advertised by companies or organizations that support CHD and our mission of improving the quality of healthcare through design research, education and advocacy.

Knowledge Repository

A complete, user-friendly library of healthcare design resources that continues to grow with the latest research. Start with our Knowledge Repository for all of your searches for articles and research citations on healthcare design topics.


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

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