Currently Reading

Hospitals are moving into their communities

Healthcare Facilities

Hospitals are moving into their communities


By Amy Carter, Bethany Callihan, and James Crispino | Gensler | July 15, 2019
Gensler Dialogue
Gensler Dialogue

In the healthcare industry, provider loyalty no longer comes from proximity alone. Thanks to a global trend of digitalization and increasingly available medical knowledge, healthcare consumers are now empowered to seek out providers that offer greater levels of accessibility, convenience, and service.

As patients begin to attain a more complete understanding of their health, they progressively expect their provider to recognize their needs, their history, and the way they prefer to engage. The average healthcare consumer is increasingly tech savvy, price conscious, and considers themselves an equal partner in their care.

To establish loyalty and satisfaction in this highly informed age, healthcare providers must simplify access and improve experience. This focal shift, supported by new technologies, has pushed many services outside of the hospital environment and into the surrounding communities, prompting providers and consultants to reevaluate how best to plan for the distribution of care.

1. Empowering the Patient
In the widely distributed healthcare landscape, consumers have more choices available to them than ever before — which makes the patient experience a top priority. Consistency across a variety of settings is key to establishing provider brand. Patients want their time to be valued, their needs respected, and their concerns communicated to the care team. In the interest of reducing wait times, providers are beginning to replace large waiting spaces with more consult/exam and staff amenity spaces. Implementing a real-time locating system also supports this spatial shift and allows patients to check in, show themselves to a room, and alert the care team of their arrival. The result is a more efficient throughput for the provider and a perception of valued time for the consumer.

2. Collaboration and Connection
Patients want to feel informed and included. A highly collaborative and connected environment promotes health and wellness while improving their experience. A patient’s social determinants also have an impact on their health and, as a result, multi-disciplinary care teams are expanding to include psychologists, social workers, and nutritionists. Small exam rooms are shifting to larger Exam/Consult rooms to accommodate this growth and improve communication. The care provider and the patient are then able to meet as equals at the consult table, leading to more meaningful conversations, broader wellness education opportunities, and an increased investment from the patient.

3. The Right Technology for Everyone
Baby boomers account for the largest portion of the current patient population, followed closely by millennials – presenting care providers with a noticeable difference in demands, approach, and comprehensive technological fluency. When designing state-of-the art facilities, it is imperative to recognize the generational differences and tailor the provider’s approach to their specific patient demographics. For some communities, it may be highly beneficial to consider relatively low-tech options: a printer in the exam room, for example, allows the care team to print and go over educational materials on the spot. Meanwhile, more tech-savvy populations may respond better to health applications they can use to access resources or schedule follow-ups on their own time, from their mobile devices.

4. Social Networks and Wellness
Social and virtual networks are proving to be useful tools in healthcare delivery for chronic disease management, healthy behavioral promotion, and behavior and recovery services. In the physical space, healthcare lobbies can become wellness-focused third spaces. Likewise, waiting rooms are being re-imagined as active health and wellness concourses, where the community can conduct normal daily activities, access advice, participate in a myriad of classes, or connect with other patients for support group sessions. Promoting social networks and wellness activities within communities is essential to their fundamental health and wellness.

5. Expanding Access
Telemedicine is a prime option for patients who can’t make it to the ambulatory care center but want to stay connected to their care team during their daily routine. Healthcare providers are adding specifically-designed telemedicine rooms to their health centers in the interest of expanding and improving access to more patients. In rural areas, Virtual Health Care Centers are providing comprehensive health services while expanding the reach of specialists. The Virtual Care Center may be connected to a rural hospital to help advise the local care team on a course of treatment or specialized case.

Hospitals are moving into their communities as empowered consumers continue to drive change in the healthcare landscape and push providers to become more accessible. By implementing these five progressive strategies, we place a higher value on the consumer’s time, elevate the quality of care and pave the way for new technologies while enhancing the patient experience. In doing so, providers will improve the lives of the people they serve.

More from Author

Gensler | Sep 4, 2020

The office building of the future should be an essential part of its community

When the dust settles, the office is going to look and feel like a different place than the one we left in March.

Gensler | May 12, 2020

Understanding the touchless workplace

In the workplace, digital solutions and platforms have eliminated some of the noise by improving guest check-in, conference room booking, company communications, wayfinding, food and beverage service, and more.

Gensler | Mar 27, 2020

Designing healthcare for surge capacity

We believe that part of the longer-term answer lies not just with traditional health providers, but in the potential of our cities and communities to adapt and change.

Gensler | Mar 18, 2020

We are in the midst of a paradigm shift for higher education

The question for higher education is, what will the university of the future look like?

Gensler | Mar 15, 2020

Designing office building lobbies to respond to the coronavirus

Touch-free design solutions and air purifiers can enhance workplace wellness.

Gensler | Mar 15, 2020

In the face of the coronavirus, workplace wellness is key

Here are a few considerations employers should keep in mind in creating plans for a healthy and effective work environment.

Gensler | Feb 11, 2020

Want your organization to be more creative? Embrace these 4 workplace strategies

Creativity is the secret sauce in the success of every business.

Gensler | Oct 17, 2019

Doubling down on our commitment to resilience

With hundreds of millions of square feet of buildings and interior design projects in the pipeline annually, we believe our impact and role in reducing energy demand is critical.

Gensler | May 20, 2019

How the Internet of Things will transform airport environments

Connected devices and their wealth of data have led to significant improvements in operational efficiency and passenger experience in airports.

Gensler | Apr 30, 2019

How open is too open for you office?

Our data reveal what is truly going on in the current workplace, with insights on how workplace design can deliver new value to organizations.

More In Category


How open is too open for you office?

Our data reveal what is truly going on in the current workplace, with insights on how workplace design can deliver new value to organizations.




Magazine Subscription
Subscribe

Get our Newsletters

Each day, our editors assemble the latest breaking industry news, hottest trends, and most relevant research, delivered to your inbox.

Subscribe

Follow BD+C: