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Authors

  1. Mammen, Jens BArch
  2. Laude, Cum BS
  3. Costello, Brenna MArch

Abstract

Patients undergoing bone marrow transplant, using spinal cord services, and with traumatic brain injury represent a relatively new patient type, requiring both intense care and long-term care in the same facility. As medical advances allow these patients the opportunity to recover from their critical illnesses or injuries, designers and caregivers must give increased attention to the long-term critical care environment. Designing for this type of care requires an understanding of new technologies and the potential for the built environment to address the wide range of physical, sensory, and psychological issues long-term inpatients face. Recent work by SmithGroupJJR has provided valuable insights into the ways in which lighting, patient room and unit layouts, spatial volumes, and other design elements can contribute to the recovery of patients who must spend weeks or months in a critical care environment. This knowledge was gained through an approach that allows design professionals to immerse themselves in a health care institution's values, culture, and work processes. By mapping both operational flow and patients' experiences, project teams can develop design solutions that sustain the well-being of higher-acuity patients and their family members and caregivers.