Patient-centred improvements in healthcare built environments: perspectives and design indicators.

Douglas, CH and Douglas, MR 2005, 'Patient-centred improvements in healthcare built environments: perspectives and design indicators.' , Health Expectations, 8 (3) , pp. 264-276.

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Objective To explore patients’ perceptions of health-care built environments, to assess how they perceived health-care built facilities and designs. To develop a set of patient-centred indicators by which to appraise future health-care designs. Design Qualitative and quantitative methodologies, including futures group conferencing, autophotographic study, novice-expert exchanges and a questionnaire survey of a representative sample of past patients. Setting and participants The research was carried out at Salford Royal Hospitals NHS Trust (SRHT), Greater Manchester, UK, selected for the study because of planned comprehensive redevelopment based on the new NHS vision for hospital care and service delivery for the 21st century. Participants included 35 patients who took part in an autophotographic study, eight focus groups engaged in futures conferencing, a sample of past inpatients from the previous 12 months that returned 785 completed postal questionnaires. Results The futures group provided suggestions for radical improvements which were categorized into transport issues; accessibility and mobility; ground and landscape designs; social and public spaces; homeliness and assurance; cultural diversity; safety and security; personal space and access to outside. Patients’ autophotographic study centred on: the quality of the ward design, human interactions, the state and quality of personal space, and facilities for recreation and leisure. The novices’ suggestions were organized into categories of elemental factors representing patient-friendly designs. Experts from the architectural and surveying professions and staff at SRHT in turn considered these categories and respective subsets of factors. They agreed with the novices in terms of the headings but differed in prioritizing the elemental factors. The questionnaire survey of past patients provided opinions about ward designs that varied according to where they stayed, single room, bay ward or long open ward. The main concerns were limitation of private space around the bed area, supportive of privacy and dignity, ward noise and other disturbances. Conclusions Patients perceived sustainable health-care environments to be supportive of their health and recovery. The design indicators developed from their perspectives and from their considerations for improvements to the health-care built environment were based on their visions of the role of the health-care facilities. These were homely environments that supported normal lifestyle and family functioning and designs that were supportive of accessibility and travel movements through transitional spaces.

Item Type: Article
Themes: Subjects / Themes > R Medicine > R Medicine (General)
Subjects / Themes > T Technology > TA Engineering (General). Civil engineering (General)
Health and Wellbeing
Built and Human Environment
Schools: Schools > School of the Built Environment
Schools > School of Environment and Life Sciences > Ecosystems and Environment Research Centre
Journal or Publication Title: Health Expectations
Publisher: Blackwell Publishing
Refereed: Yes
ISSN: 1369-6513
Depositing User: H Kenna
Date Deposited: 11 Sep 2007 15:22
Last Modified: 27 Aug 2021 22:01

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