For the last few years, #TeamHenderson has participated in Vanderbilt School of Engineering’s Annual Healthcare Design & Construction Symposium. The schedule is always packed with experts from every area of the industry. Over the course of the two-day event, we gathered the following takeaways on healthcare as it is and what it can be.
Upstream care, the new healthcare buzzword.
Both insurers and hospitals are investing in lifestyle healthcare. Much of their resources are focused on helping people get care conveniently and equipping them to make healthy living a priority. The idea is that people manage their health upstream of a hospital stay. The strategy uses clinics and outpatient facilities to manage chronic and daily healthcare needs. Acute care continues to be offered at the main hospital campus. By allocating finances toward this model the healthcare industry is strategically moving toward active healthcare outside the hospital.
Healthcare networks providing regional coverage.
Networks are working hard to bring healthcare closer to patients. However, varying levels of quality prevent many patients from using the closest hospital. In fact, data shows that the size of a hospital can impact complication rates and that critical access hospitals are better than we think. Because people are willing to drive further for higher quality care, networks are zeroing in on standards across the board. If patients receive the same quality of care no matter which hospital they visit, there is less incentive to travel for it. Which is opening doors for more efficient centralized care.
Medical staff needs a better workplace.
There is a shortage of doctors in the United States. One of the biggest factors is hospital staff burnout. The industry is taking steps to improve job functionality. Incorporating new documentation technologies like natural voice recognition can help doctors concentrate more on patients and enhance their engagement. However, the building community is exploring physical design elements to increase employee engagement. The patient experience is paramount, but it can’t be at the expense of the medical professional’s well-being. Incorporating design elements such as natural light can contribute to the workplace as well as patient outcomes. Gaining an understanding of the doctors’ and nurses’ needs, allows us to create solutions that elevate the standard of care and build a better workplace.
Recently, life expectancy in the United States declined. Opioid addiction, violence, and unhealthy life choices have led to an unfortunate reality. As the healthcare community, we are tasked with figuring out how we can contribute to thwarting this crisis. Encouraging shift by collaborating toward the same goal is just a start. Working through a variety of methodologies like integrated project delivery, (IPD), design-build, and early contractor involvement also paves the way for innovation and improves project outcomes.
When we collaborate and connect with those who we work alongside, we move the needle toward advancing healthcare for everyone. If you have questions about your facility, connect with us here.