Four Strategies for More Efficient Hospital Designs
Louisville, KY – R. Wayne Estopinal, president of TEG Architects and solution provider at the marcus evans National Healthcare CXO Summit Spring 2016, discusses how to improve a health system’s performance through efficient facility design.
“With the Affordable Care Act (ACA), hospitals will need to accommodate more patients in essentially the same amount of space and number of beds, with fewer staff due to the aging nursing workforce.”
– Wayne Estopinal, President of TEG Architects
“Every health facility has an opportunity to engage in projects that will have a significant impact on performance and outcomes. They can implement a number of innovative approaches to turn beds over faster and ease the strain on staff. We have proved numerous times that the quality and the appropriateness of the physical environment radically affect staff efficiency and productivity, whether it is the corporate headquarters or acute care facility. The built environment is incredibly integrated in the outcomes of clinical activities,” he adds.
Estopinal believes that many health systems simply get by as best as they can with existing facilities due to the enormous capital investment that is required to alter their build environment. He likens this to someone trying to win a Formula 1 race with a 40-year old car. “It is just not going to happen.”
“When we conduct evidence-based design research looking at clinical utilization before and after a major project, the financial results of every department, patient satisfaction, staff turnover rates and so on, we find that enormous gains can be made in every case. The sooner healthcare executives recognize their facility is part of the problem, the sooner they will realize that having a more appropriate staff support space and clinical needs at the point of care can affect their patient and financial outcomes, so the sooner they can be part of the solution to turn the health system in the U.S. around,” he suggests.
What should facilities consider in the design process to make this happen? Here Estopinal shares a few strategies he considers critical.
Clinical and design collaboration. The way various clinicians engage with the facility. It is important to look at current clinical operations and envision how they could be done with greater efficiency, higher levels of staff productivity, patient and family satisfaction, but also higher and more consistent patient outcomes. All of these are possible with a good design and planning strategy.
Give clinicians a better vision of the design to examine. Not a simple vision statement but 3D illustrations of how a particular design would apply to the clinical objectives of a facility or department. In a project, non-design participants do not have the ability to process 2D drawings and provide high quality feedback to the design team. We utilize an in-house studio, often live at our clients’ location, providing 3D illustrations and animations to get superior feedback, which ultimately results in greater efficiency and staff productivity.
Collaboration between the client and design team from early on. They should discuss their current clinical utilization data as well as their strategic plan for the future of the facility or health system. For a successful project, the design team must really understand where the facility is headed.
Understanding inter-departmental relationships is essential. When spaces are cohabited it reduces the overall square footage of the facility. When inter-departmental relationships are appropriate, the travel distances for staff and patients is less. When a patient is in a critical condition, travel distances impact time to care.
TEG is an internationally recognized firm focusing on comprehensive facility planning, architecture, visualization and interior design services. Understanding the client’s business, mission, challenges and competitive landscape forms the basis by which TEG delivers its menu of services. The firm specializes in health care, wellness, educational, municipal and commercial facilities. For More Information Contact:
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About the National Healthcare CXO Summit Spring 2016
TEG Architects is a solution provider at the marcus evans NATIONAL HEALTHCARE CXO SUMMIT SPRING 2016. This premium forum brings senior level healthcare executives and solution providers together and offers an intimate environment for a focused discussion of key new drivers shaping the healthcare industry. Taking place at the Eau Palm Beach Resort & Spa, Palm Beach, Florida, May 15-17, 2016, the Summit includes presentations on healthcare reform and the ACA, managing population health and improving patient experience, and positioning the organization for short and long-term success. For more information please send an email to PRESS@MARCUSEVANSCY.COM or visit the event website.