Clinicians are stuck in a Catch-22. At the same time that the healthcare industry is in the midst of a roiling period of change, doctors and nurses are being asked to do more and more, often with less support than before. New technologies and electronic health records mean a steep learning curve, while new procedures, older and sicker patients, and staff shortages mean more pressure and demands on clinicians while on the job.
It’s for these very reasons that the design and application of clinician workspaces is so important. They have the power to be a strategic asset to increase the effectiveness of an organization, which in turn can lead to a positive impact on patient care and satisfaction.
Whether it’s a welcome area where family, consulting physicians or other visitors can escape the activity of the floor, or a collaboration space that can function for a shift-change meeting, a quick huddle or a teaching/learning exchange, the versatility and functionality of these spaces are absolutely crucial and can make a real difference in the lives of clinicians and their patients.
Steelcase Health insights on clinician workspaces:
1. Clinicians alternate between collaboration and focused individual work throughout their work shift. Having a range of spatial solutions allows clinicians to choose places that provide the right tools and level of privacy for whatever they need to do.
2. People are different sizes and have varied preferences for how they work. Shared clinician spaces should be designed to quickly fit individual needs 24/7, so that each person can get comfortable effortlessly, with minimal transition time from space to space or task to task.
3. Technology advances are rapidly changing work processes. It is very important to future-proof clinicians’ workspaces as much as possible and avoid built-in obsolescence.
4. Successful healthcare is interdependent, connected care. When clinicians understand what each clinician has done and how it fits into an overall plan, patient outcomes will most likely improve. What’s more, establishing meaningful connections with co-workers is a proven way to improve clinician engagement in their work and reduce stress.
See the full Insights and Applications Guide for further perspective and ideas on how to maximize the effectiveness of clinician workspaces.