I'm a newly minted grad student in Architecture, Culture and Behavior.
(8/26) Media:Field Notes.doc
Articles of interest:
[] "Scariest Hospital Risks" While not addressed directly in the article, it underscores the need for a sound, efficient and safe waste management system, which is critical in preventing the spread of bacteria/disease. Before our brainstorm I had never thought about waste and the implications of its use/misuse (I guess out of sight out of mind!) but now I see it as an essential component.
[] "A Treatment Room with a View" Interesting article on evidence-based design and the call for more patient-friendly hospitals. As one expert states, ""Most veterinarians put their patients in better surroundings than patients who are getting chemo." Yikes. What did hospitals do before they employed evidence-based design? Is the rise of E-BD parallel to the increase in patient and family centered care?
(9/20) During our field observations at the ED today I was struck by the ability of the nurses to adapt to seemingly oppressive environmental conditions. Humans are very adaptable creatures in general--its amazing what we can "get used to". Walking through the halls I was overcome by a sense of claustrophobia and over-stimulation which I feel is due, in large part, to the lighting, which is intense and incessant. No windows (natural sunlight), no ability to modulate lights, no variations throughout the day. Many times these nurses come in at dark and leave at dark and never see daylight. Yet, when asked their opinions about the lighting conditions most responses were "it's fine." Short of knocking out walls, what can be done? The same holds true for the interior design/decoration. Absolutely no color or decor and any hint of comfort and humanity infused into the physical landscape. Why? Is it because we are "used to" it? It's something I feel is such a simple and obvious way to alleviate stress (ocular, emotional). All I kept thinking was, why are hospitals so inhospitable?!