Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Facility Planning Forum - Fall Risk in Hospitals

Submitted by:  Jonnie Hanks, IIDA, VP of Forums
Facility Planning Forum

"Contribution to the Designed Environment to Fall Risk in Hospitals"

We all have beloved grandmothers, grandfathers, aunts, uncles and all manner of older family friends that we know at some point in time will be spending some amount of time in a healthcare facility, right?  We may even have experienced the pain and loss surrounding frailty, or even death, associated with “just” a simple fall.  Two of my grandparents really took a turn for the worse after falling in their Healthcare Facility  --  and it can be very heartbreaking to watch.

That’s just one reason why hospital facility managers, administrators and designers are looking more closely at recent research which examines how patient room design affects falls within the hospital environment.

"Multiple issues need to be considered while making decisions about healthcare interiors. Nowhere is this more evident than in the design of the patient room," stated Margaret Calkins, Ph.D., M Arch, EDAC, senior research scientist, IDEAS Institute. "Design decisions about the room layout, flooring, lighting, finishes, and furniture, impact a range of healthcare outcomes for patients such as patient satisfaction, hospital-acquired infections (HAIs), patient falls and medical errors. With reimbursement tied increasingly to these hospital-acquired conditions and patient satisfaction, hospital owners and administrators are paying a lot of attention to the factors that impact these outcomes, including the design of the built environment and the design of patient rooms."
Facility Guidelines Institute (FGI) is responsible for the Guidelines for Design and Construction of Health Care Facilities that is used as code in over 40 states by facilities, designers, and authorities for the design and construction of new and renovated healthcare facilities. The IDEAS Institute is a nonprofit organization that seeks to be a premier resource of information and environment-behavioral research centered on improving care and quality of life for elders.

A new free research report explores how the design and arrangement of hospitals and particularly patient rooms affects the chances that a patient will fall and be injured during a hospital stay.
Contribution of the Designed Environment to Fall Risk in Hospitals, is now available in The Center for Health Design's Knowledge Repository thanks to support from The Facility Guidelines Institute and IDEAS Institute. 


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