Steelcase Health Collegiate Healthcare Design Competition Finalists #5 and #6

These are the final two entries we’ll be highlighting in the Steelcase Health Collegiate Healthcare Design Competition. The winner will be announced Thursday!

The fifth finalist we are featuring on the Steelcase Health blog hails from Virginia Commonwealth University, and submitted a project entitled, “Renovation of Crossover Healthcare Ministries”. The team consists of Caroline Eddy and Jillian Chapin, and they were advised by Chris Arias.

The current CrossOver Healthcare Ministries Clinic is located on a busy street in an urban neighborhood in Richmond, Virginia. It provides healthcare, dentistry, ophthalmology, counseling and community outreach services.

This team identified opportunities for increased workspace, collaborative spaces, organization strategies, integration of natural daylight, privacy and interaction with patients. The pedestrian entrance, reception area, waiting room, exam rooms and nurses’ station were identified as key areas for improvement.

A design focus of the project was light and shadow in the natural environment. The intent of this focus was to create a sensory calm – for both staff and patients – that provides an experience of trust, safety and healing. A unique cellular-inspired pattern was developed and repeated throughout the project on wall and window screens, fabrics and other hard materials.

The reinvention of the ‘clinic’ in terms of mobility, aesthetics and experience was paramount to their motivation to use the themes of light, nature and sculpture found in Evidence-based Design.

Some of the judges’ feedback included “very inspiring design concept with a thoughtful presentation”, “clear thought process from development of design concept to execution”, and  “great report. Nicely done and easy to understand”.

The sixth and final finalist in the 2012 Steelcase Health Collegiate Healthcare Design Competition is from Iowa State University, and consists of team members Joseph Louis Hersheway, Maghan Reichert, Zhengyang Wang, and Morgan Zimmerman. They titled their project “Integrating Mobile Technology to Advance the Rehabilitation Care in a Research Hospital” and were advised by Jihyun Song and Cameron Campbell.

The Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago (RIC) is a 30-story healthcare center located in downtown Chicago. The RIC is used mainly for research and clinical care of patients recovering from injury, disease and debilitating health conditions. For this project, the team’s goal was to create a new modern facility that provides a unique patient experience.

The team focused on an idea of integration in which the healing process is improved upon by blending critical space in a natural way. Biophilic design – the concept that contact with nature promotes psychological wellbeing and physical health – was incorporated through the use of natural materials, organic shapes and natural light. Nature in artwork was emphasized throughout the building and the site includes a great view of Lake Michigan. Panoramic areas are included on the inpatient floors and the sky lobby to allow for uninterrupted views of the Chicago skyline and Lake Michigan.

The students saw an opportunity to improve the relationship between the patient and the rehabilitation process by providing a sense of community within the patient floors. Dedicated social spaces are unique in the world of rehabilitation and were implemented to help patients feel inspired to recover while bonding and interacting with other patients like them on their floor.

Curving corridors allow patients to circulate throughout their floor. Discouraging views of long, daunting hallways and hard turns are avoided by the curvature of the corridor. Plus, patients with mobility issues can maneuver the curving hallways more easily.

Evidence-based design influenced the team’s choice of same-handed patient rooms (which helps decrease nursing errors), a sink in the entryway and dedicated family area within each patient room, and decentralized nurse stations that help promote a better connection between patients and staff.

Judges’ comments included “integration of social spaces with patient spaces and biophilic design were well thought through as EBD concepts for a rehab facility” and “truly very impressive project”.

Learn more about the 2012 Collegiate Healthcare  Design Competition.

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