Design & Architectural Trends That Are Modernizing Hospitals

Aug 26, 2019

chirdrens hospital hallway

As hospitals race to improve their facilities, attract new business and better treat/serve their patients, they are investing in new technologies, revamping their design strategies and closely following evidence-based practices that have been shown to increase patient satisfaction. This has led to an increase in redesigned facilities that are becoming more modernized; the focus is just as much on patient comfort as it is on patient health, as both are heavily influential on a hospital's success.

As we move towards the future of modern hospital design, here are the trends that are influencing the industry.

Embracing Modern Technology

While technology has always been at the forefront of the healthcare industry, there has been a sudden shift towards technology that serves patients, rather than treats them. While having up-to-date medical equipment is still a priority, faculties are implementing a variety of modern electronics aimed at consumers, including:

  • Charging stations around the facilities for patients and visitors to charge devices
  • Mobile computer workstations for patients and family members who need to work/access the Internet during long stays
  • Digital kiosks where patients and visitors can access information about the facility without having to track down a receptionist or other hospital employee

Adaptable Rooms and Spaces

Flexibility is a large goal for the modern facility who needs to better utilize their space and serve as wide a range of patients as possible. Whereas older facilities are locked into how their spaces can be used, the modern facility is embracing spaces that can be changed over on the fly. How are they doing this? Prefabricated partitions and temporary walls are being used to split large spaces into multiple rooms to maximize privacy (a large determinant of patient satisfaction). These walls can be easily broken down and removed when more space is needed.

The more flexibility a facility has, the better they can adapt and scale to meet the changing demands of modern patients. Changing over rooms is a large part of this process, which is why temporary walls, interchangeable whiteboards and other design elements are becoming much more commonly used.

Modern Materials for Patient Safety

Preventing the spread of infections in facilities is a primary concern for hospitals, which is why they take measures to limit the growth and spread of bacteria using new materials and best practices. Some of the steps designers have taken include:

  • Copper materials and copper finishes: copper has natural antimicrobial properties and is being used on doorknobs and other areas in facilities. Steel also shares some of the same properties as copper, but is not as effective (however, it's normally less expensive).
  • Indigo lighting: LED indigo lighting is used to create a chemical reaction within microbes that can destroy their cells when the light is absorbed.
  • Non-porous surfaces: glass surfaces on tabletops, whiteboards and other furniture help limit the spread of bacteria. Glass is naturally non-porous, meaning it's hard for bacteria to cultivate within the microscopic holes on the surface. Ceramic shares the same non-porous properties as glass.

Modernize Your Facility with Better Design and New Products

VividBoard is helping facilities modernize the way their patients and staff interact with whiteboards. Not only are our custom whiteboards easy to clean and made from non-porous materials (like glass), they are also easy to use and designed to help physicians communicate better with patients. Learn more about our hospital whiteboard lines by contacting our team today.