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Patient and Staff Safety Workshop
The Center for Health Design - CURRENTS Newsletter
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The Center for Health Design
The Center for Health Design - Currents Newsletter

June 14, 2018

The Scoop

Understand the Present to Plan
for the Future

We all have different ways of organizing and planning our personal and professional lives. But sometimes, everyday life can get in the way of taking the time to lay out and follow through with our plans for the future. It's worth taking a step back every so often to create a new or revise a current action plan that will ensure you stay on track with your goals. As the saying goes, “Failing to plan is planning to fail.” But, it's not just everyday life that distracts us, keeping the momentum in plans and projects can also seem a bit more challenging during the summer months with team members in and out of the office on vacation. Sometimes, a little help is all that's needed to keep projects moving in the right direction.

Here at The Center, we want to keep you not just on-track by providing you with resources, tools and events focused on the latest healthcare design research, resources and tools for today’s most urgent and challenging healthcare design issues, but inspired. To that end, we have three upcoming workshops focused on different topics - all with expert faculty members. The Designing for Patient and Staff Safety - A Systems Approach Workshop is one and a half days, June 25-26, in Chicago that will provide you and your team with the latest safety, design and organizational strategies and solutions. The second workshop, Putting Evidence-Based Design into Practice - an EDAC workshop is one day, July 25, and also in Chicago. This in-depth workshop will provide direct access to evidence-based design industry experts allowing you to spend time with them as your personal coach, getting direct answers to specific questions. Early bird rates are available for this workshop through June 25. And finally on September 27 in Baltimore, we will hold our second annual Behavioral Health—Strategic Facility Design Innovations that Improve Treatment Outcomes, Safety and the Bottom Line Workshop. This one day interactive workshop will allow participants to engage with a faculty of experts in behavioral health and design in order to learn physical design strategies and methodologies that support improved care for behavioral health. 

If you'd like something more casual, there are still two more of regional Health Design Insights Networking events this year- the first coming up in Chicago on July 26, followed by New York on September 13. If you're in either area on those dates, I'd like to invite you to join us - you'll get a chance to meet the community and come away filled with new ideas, insights and connections.

And finally, there are two important deadlines coming up: the Evidence-Based Design Touchstone Award submissions are due tomorrow, June 15 - remember, this round of award recipients will be recognized at this year's Healthcare Design Expo & Conference and the Environments for Aging Expo & Conference presentation submissions are due June 29.

As we continue to celebrate our 25th anniversary, our pledge to you is to continue to offer you the needed tools, resources and insights to ensure all healthcare environments are healthy, safe and produce the best possible outcomes for patients, families, and staff. You can be a part of our celebration by donating to The Center for Health Design. Donations help us achieve the research, education, and advocacy goals that unleash design's healing power in the U.S. and abroad and help us to ensure a strong future for decades yet to come. Click here to make a contribution to The Center and make a difference in the future of healthcare.  

Be well,

Debra Levin, EDAC
President and CEO


Industry News Briefs

The Future of Healthcare Design and Construction?
It’s Factory Made

What if we could make patient care better and more accessible by applying intelligent design and manufacturing principles to build healthcare spaces?

Rising costs and complexity across healthcare and construction have made it more challenging to enhance patient experiences through new healthcare facilities. One solution: deliver customization via intelligent design. Technological advancements make it possible to manufacture many healthcare building components — think complete patient and treatment rooms — offsite, to be assembled onsite for higher quality, yet more-efficient construction.

At the same time, these added efficiencies allow providers and their teams access to better options at lower prices—ultimately making healthcare more accessible to the communities that need it the most.
Healthcare Facilities Today, more . . .


Designing Emergency Departments to Shrink Wait Times

The feelings associated with overcrowding, being shuffled from one area to another, and the uncertainty of what’s next are common pain points for patients visiting emergency departments (EDs). However, it’s long wait times that are the primary patient complaint, according to the American College of Emergency Physicians, significantly impacting patient satisfaction and outcomes.

As emergency patient volumes continue to increase and existing facilities operate at or near capacity, eliminating the frustrations associated with ED visits isn’t getting any easier. New operational models have been introduced but only incrementally moved the needle, so now healthcare organizations are looking to designers for practical solutions to these frustrations, with three primary areas of focus. Healthcare Design,  more. . . 


Design Strategies for Noise Reduction

Excessive noise in hospitals can adversely affect the physiological and psychological well-being of both patients and staff. Frequent sources of complaints include lack of privacy due to multiple patient beds in the same room, noise from clinical equipment (e.g., monitoring alarms, infusion pumps and respirators), and elevated noise from staff activities in larger, open work areas, says William Chu, LEED AP BD+C, senior and principal consultant, Acentech, Los Angeles, and Cambridge, Mass.

“Increased noise levels negatively impact the patient experience during a hospital stay. This might be due to the fact that excessive noise can increase patients’ heart and respiratory rates, heighten blood pressure and increase stress,” says Margi Kaminski, ASID, NCIDQ, principal and national co-director of health care interiors at CannonDesign in Chicago. “In addition, patients are often fatigued by the blast of medical alarms and do not get needed rest.”

Elevated background noise levels may impede audio communication and monitoring. “Unexpected or irrelevant noises may distract the attention of pharmacists and surgeons from medication dispensing or surgical tasks, causing medical errors and near misses,” adds Ellen Taylor, Ph.D., AIA, EDAC, vice president for research, The Center for Health Design. Health Facilities Management, more . . .


Submit Innovative Architectural and Interior Design Solutions to the Healthcare Environment Awards 2018

Submission Deadline is July 13, 2018
The Healthcare Environment Awards honor healthcare interior architecture and design across a range of project types. Co-sponsored by Contract magazine and The Center for Health Design, in cooperation with the Healthcare Design Expo & Conference, the Healthcare Environment Awards are published in the November issue of Contract magazine. 
More information here




Designing for Patient and Staff Safety - A Systems Approach Workshop

Register Today - use code "Safety65" and save $65.00 off registraton!

Date:  June 25-26, 2018

Hyatt Centric Chicago Magnificent Mile
633 N. St. Clair Street
Chicago, IL 60611

Are you using the latest and best research, strategies and tools? Are you considering the impact that organizational factors, processes and people have on your designs’ effectiveness?

Identifying design strategies, selections and materials that can improve patient and staff safety is an important first step. But if you’re making these decisions in a silo – without considering how an organization’s operations and people might impact their effectiveness – you’re likely missing opportunities to maximize safety outcomes.

This one-of-a-kind workshop features an expert faculty uniquely qualified to “bring it all together” – safety, design and organizational factors. You’ll hear innovative solutions for addressing today’s greatest safety challenges:

  • Patient handling
  • Behavioral health
  • Patient falls
  • Medication errors
  • Workplace violence
  • Infection prevention

Where other safety seminars end, we’re just getting started.

You'll find more information including the agenda, faculty and session descriptions here.



Patient Room Checklist and Evaluation Tool

Developed through extensive review of research, surveys, site tests, and review and validation by expert advisory council members, this standard set of evidence-based design checklists and post-occupancy evaluation (POE) tools can be used by interior designers to apply research to healthcare design projects and to conduct post-occupancy evaluations of three types of hospital patient rooms: adult medical-surgical, adult intensive care, and maternity care.  

Enjoy this free resource here.




We invite you


to Submit Your Presentation for the 2019 Environments for Aging Conference

Call for Presentations Deadline is June 29, 2018, 5:00 P.M. PDT

The Environments for Aging Expo & Conference is an annual event that brings together developers, owners, design professionals, product manufacturers, academia, aging specialists, and government officials to explore new ideas for creating places that support people as they age. Developed by professionals who are day-to-day advocates and champions for improving healthcare and life experiences for the aging population, this comprehensive conference provides attendees with access to state-of-the-art information from thought leaders and innovators within the field of aging.

To submit a presentation proposal, click 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. 

A Virtual Nature Experience Reduces Anxiety and Agitation in People with Dementia

Learn about the capacity of a virtual nature experience to significantly reduce stress, reduce anxiety, and increase pleasure, and treatment strategies that provide hope of reducing pharmacologic interventions and of improving quality of life for individuals with dementia and the staff who care for them.


ART + Science

Art and Science.  In their finest expressions, they are one and the same. We face complex problems and no single approach can provide all the answers.  One cannot be a socially responsible designer or scientist without using both intuition and research. This webinar will cite historical and contemporary examples of individuals who support their simultaneous use to achieve creativity. The presentation will include a discussion of the definitions of art and science and the nature of the human mind.


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

Looking to hire or find a new position?  Visit our job postings board.

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