"Healing Architecture": Rethinking Health
How Spatial Demands In Healthcare Are Changing
The Corona pandemic has abruptly changed our lives, with issues that had been put off or neglected now taking centre stage. Our health is one such issue. We have come to realise how fragile it is and that we often pay too little attention to it. One of our sorest spots, as it were, has been exposed, sharply exacerbating existing problems in hospitals, clinics and practices.
The economic situation in the hospital sector, tense already, has been aggravated by the Corona crisis. The need to set aside hospital beds and postpone planned operations, for example, has created significant loss of revenue. In parallel, the shortage of healthcare professionals has taken a turn for the worse, affecting patient care as well as the working conditions for staff. And yet, the teams working directly with patients on a daily basis are key to ensuring that a stay in hospital or a medical treatment is perceived as positive and gets recommended to others, again impacting the profitability of the facility. Not least for the sake of their image, clinics and practices are under pressure to find great specialist staff. Attracting and retaining such talents, giving them space to develop their full potential and enhancing their satisfaction at work are some of the greatest challenges faced by the sector.
Keeping staff and patients satisfied
For the patient of the future, however, it is not only the facility’s ratings that matter. These ‘omniscient, digital patients’ have clear expectations of the healthcare system, enquiring in advance about service, accommodation and therapy options and deciding for themselves where and how they want to be treated.
The demands made by this new type of patient, for special services, trust-building care and appealing premises among other things, must be met while attracting and retaining the best of staff. And that is precisely where we come in. We help you match that!
‘Healing Architecture’: driving success for clinics and practices
Among the many factors contributing to the well-being and recovery of patients, architecture plays an important part. It can quite literally have a healing effect, as a study by Prof. Dr. Tanja C. Vollmer (“Architecture as a Second Body”, 2010) in the Netherlands has shown. To investigate the effects of clinical environments on cancer patients, the researcher monitored 500 patients during hospital stays, asking them about their perceptions and feelings of stress. Her main finding: when sick, we perceive design and visual stimuli differently from healthy people. A dreary environment, lack of daylight or poky rooms can thus become great stress factors, compounding an already difficult state.
But conversely, this also means that architecture can be a positive, even a healing, factor as long as the concept of ‘Healing Architecture’ is consistently applied to clinic and practice planning and design. Warm colours, natural materials, the quality of light, the acoustics of a room all have proven beneficial effects on our health.
Along with these feel-good factors, the strict hygiene regulations of the health sector as well as the need for cost efficiency must be part of any planning and redesign process. Here at bkp, our many years of healthcare planning and design experience have effectively shown that hygiene and cost concerns, far from being obstacles, can be fully integrated into tailor-made, carefully implemented solutions. You can count on us. Let us show you the full potential of ‘Healing Architecture’, unfolding it together with you, in line with your specific needs for your premises.
At your side – from the first briefing to your move
To secure the future success of your clinic or practice, all these new challenges, varied as they are, must be addressed and actively embraced. We want to support you along this path. As interior designers, architects, strategic consultants and healing architecture experts, we have a holistic view of the trends, opportunities and needs of the future, bringing them to bear as we transform your hospital, clinic or practice.
During a workshop in the run-up to your project, we work out just the right strategy for your specific healthcare environment. Partnering with you and your staff, we tackle today’s issues head on:
- How can we improve and streamline work processes?
- How can we ensure your staff’s loyalty and identification with your facility despite high workloads?
- How does digitalisation affect patient behaviour?
- How will this shape future care settings in clinics and practices?
- How do you, as a healthcare facility, want to be perceived by staff and patients in the future?
- How can we create the greatest possible sense of well-being for everyone involved?
Taking care of everything: consulting, planning & implementation
Building on this strategic workshop, we work out concrete requirements for the redesign and refurbishment of your healthcare environment. Throughout this process, we pay great attention to your staff, taking on board their needs and perceptions. Starting with occupancy planning and on to concept design and change management, we then accompany your transformation processes holistically, seamlessly and with dedicated contact persons for you – in short, we take care of everything.
Drawing on know-how from past projects that have earned us the German Design Award, we partner with experts and universities in the field of ‘Healing Architecture’ to keep abreast of the latest developments. Everything we learn is directly passed on to you. We are at your side from the initial idea to your move into your new premises and beyond, to ensure your continued success. Get in touch! Let’s sit down together for a comprehensive check-up of your needs and strategic focus.