September 7, 2017
Anticipate, Participate, Integrate
Getting older does have its perks. Take for instance, the expanded perspective age provides. While we at The Center have always known, and in fact based our mission on the undeniable connection between building design and well being, it has been interesting to see how this concept has expanded discussions among both the design community and those in health professions. Teams of each are now meeting at the beginning of projects to discuss how the design of built environments can have long-term implications for quality of life. And while I welcome these collaborative discussions, I know the most success will come to those projects that start by reviewing and using relevant research. At the core of all The Center's educational offerings, tools and resources is extensive research.
Our latest offering is a free toolkit created with funding from our partner, the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ). This Safety Risk Assessment (SRA) toolkit helps healthcare design teams proactively identify and mitigate built environment conditions that may impact patient and worker safety in healthcare environments. Through extensive review of research, consensus building with industry experts, and pilot testing, the SRA toolkit was created to support the 2014 FGI Guidelines for Design and Construction of Hospitals and Outpatient Facilities.
The SRA targets six areas of safety (infections, falls, medication errors, security, injuries of behavioral health, and patient handling) as required in the FGI Guidelines.
The toolkit is:
- a proactive process that can mitigate risk
- a discussion prompt for a multidisciplinary team
- an evidence-based design (EBD) approach to identify solutions.
The Safety Risk Assessment toolkit has been created through a consensus process of experts in the safety risk areas. It is intended for use with collaborative input of project and facility-based experience. The goal of this tool is to provide guidance to consider the underlying (latent) conditions that can lead to harm.There are even helpful "how-to" videos in this tool to help answer any question and make it easy to use.
It's a busy time of year as we head into fall. Which means there are lots of upcoming opportunities to recharge, learn about new design strategies, meet industry experts and get inspired. We've got several upcoming events that will do just that - make sure you pick up on some of this positive energy and get the following events on your calendar including:
Stay up-to-date with all the learning opportunities we offer, both in-person and online, by viewing our website calendar.
In the Insights and Solutions section of our website, we offer the 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 are just a few of the open resources you can find there:
As always, let me know what tools and resources are helpful to you, and we'll feature them in our future newsletters.
Debra Levin, EDAC
President and CEO
Industry News Briefs
Joint Commission Highlights Strategies to Minimize Noise, Distractions in OR
In a Quick Safety Issue, the Joint Commission delved into strategies to reduce unnecessary noise and distraction in surgical environments.
One strategy recommended is to first benchmark noise levels and then provide evidence for noise-reduction strategies and empirical data reflecting efficacy of such strategies. The facility also can provide real-time information to the OR team as to when noise levels are exceeding recommended levels.
The Joint Commission, more . . .
Public Hospitals Treat Greater Share of Mental Health Patients*
For people in New York with severe mental illness, the path to treatment has increasingly passed through the city’s public hospitals, even as health officials and private hospitals try to accelerate years of slow progress by providing people with better outpatient care.
A new report shows that treatment is being provided more and more by the city’s strained public hospital system, as financial pressures on some private hospitals drive them to divert psychiatric patients and close beds.
The number of mental health admissions at public city hospitals increased sharply over the five years ending in 2014, even as private hospitals shed psychiatric inpatients over the same period, according to the report, released last month by the city’s Independent Budget Office. The share of beds that public hospitals designated for psychiatric patients was more than three times greater than in private hospitals. The New York Times, more . . .
*Mental health and substance abuse issues have reached the crisis stage.These issues impact every type of healthcare facility and department. Are you working with the best and latest information to respond to these challenges? Join today's top experts on September 26, 2017 in Arlington, VA, at our next Pebble in Practice Workshop - "Behavioral Health—Strategic Facility Design Innovations that Improve Treatment Outcomes, Safety and the Bottom Line". More information here.
Architecture's Next Big Thing: Buildings that Make Us Feel Better
Forget style, functionality and aesthetics: architecture’s hot topic is how to design buildings that improve our health, both mental and physical. Cue indoor gardens, emotionally pleasing colour palettes, stairs in place of lifts … even animal enclosures.
The emblem of the next big thing in global architecture is a flight of stairs. Rising from the lobby of Frasers Property's headquarters in Rhodes, cheek-to-suburban-cheek with Sydney's Olympic Park, this broad stairwell of palatial dimensions is softened by a suite of Mondrian-coloured couches – bold red, cream and yellow – cascading down its centre. Visitors and staff cross paths in this stepped atrium. The Sydney Morning Herald, more . . .
The Center’s work is made possible with the funding support of our Partner: