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Where Do Hospitals Begin . . . and End?

by Fred Fortin

Wailea, Maui - I’m attending an Estes Park Institute conference listening to a short presentation by Leland Kaiser, a Senior Fellow at the Institute, talk about “evidenced-based environmental design” a new, emerging perspective when it comes to hospitals and their healing potential. Besides hospital design being functional and aesthetic, he argues that hospitals have to become “transformative and healing”; the hospital, in and of itself, should be evocative of the individual’s health potential.

Kaiser believes hospitals should move from being a “service industry” to an “experiential” industry. They should be much more than “containers” of the sick, he says. Hospitals are active health agents, whose responsibilities begin before the patient is admitted and extend to after patients are discharged. A re-visioning is in order, and a big part of that process is designing hospitals to fit with patients, their families and, their employees. Whole courses of disease, he believes, can be altered by changing environments. More research and advocacy like that being at the Center for Health Desig is need says Kaiser.


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[…] my entire post over at the World Health Care Blog. Posted in Healthcare, WorldHealthCareBlog. Tags: environment […]

[…] Fred Fortin’s posting on this subject on Jan 28 described how Leland Kaiser at the Center for Health Design described the “place” challenges facing hospitals as centers for transformation and healing. But it is an unfortunate reality of hospitals and the Center, itself, that they are both overly concerned about hospitals as places rather than things. Clearly, when any organization defines its mission and vision, it makes sense for it to indicate what it aims for, but also what it does not aim for, both hospitals and the Center seem concerned with health, not merely sickness. […]

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