Creating Healing Spaces in Healthcare

In the ever-evolving landscape of healthcare, creating an environment that supports the well-being of patients, families, caregivers, and staff is crucial. Consider the first impression of the lobby, to the waiting rooms complete with comfortable seating and cleanable textiles. The design of healthcare spaces plays a pivotal role in enhancing outpatient experiences. There are three key elements that contribute to better patient experiences, starting with designing for calmness, ergonomic furniture choices, and considerations for surfaces and textiles.

Designing for Zen

Creating a calming environment within healthcare facilities is essential for promoting positive patient experiences. Elements that influence a calm patient’s state of mind include:

  • soothing color palettes
  • natural lighting
  • well-thought-out spatial arrangements

Consider incorporating elements biophilia, such as indoor plants or nature-inspired artwork, to bring a sense of tranquility. A serene environment can positively impact patient outcomes and contribute to an overall sense of well-being. The above waiting room is a great example of this philosophy. Lots of filtered natural light and serene colors mix with live plants to create a friendly environment. The blue Riverbend and Pebble lounge acts as a pop of color and a comfortable place for families to rest. 

Ergonomic Furniture Choices

The selection of ergonomic furniture is crucial for both patients and staff who spend significant time in healthcare facilities. Comfortable seating in waiting areas and functional workstations contribute to a positive experience. Ergonomic chairs and desks that support proper posture and reduce physical strain can enhance the overall well-being of both patients and healthcare professionals.

For example, the Ergotron StyleView Vertical Lift allows caretakers to utilize a monitor at eye level, plus move the monitor around in order to show patients or loved ones important information on the screen. 

Surface and Textile Considerations

Maintaining a hygienic environment is paramount in healthcare settings. Quality finishes that meet the demand for cleanliness, durability, and patient-focused aesthetics should be prioritized. Consider easy-to-clean surfaces and textiles that withstand rigorous cleaning protocols while still providing a visually pleasing atmosphere. Choosing materials that are resistant to stains and wear ensures a long-lasting and welcoming healthcare environment.

The Exam Stool, pictured above is one of many Haworth products designed specifically for healthcare facilities. It was made to be durable for years of use, plus cleanable for the safety of patients and caregivers. For more ergonomic support, the Zody LX Cleanable is fully upholstered and can be completely disinfected. 

Spaces to Consider

1. Inpatient Rooms:

2. Lobby & Waiting Rooms:

  • Create a lasting first impression with comfortable seating, cleanable textiles, and aesthetically pleasing furnishings.

3. Cafeteria:

  • Design a welcoming space for patients and guests to enjoy meals with durable and visually appealing furniture. The Very Wire chair can be stacked and fully disinfected. 

4. Plants & Outdoor Spaces:

  • Enhance the healing environment by incorporating plants in indoor spaces like waiting rooms. Outdoor spaces like courtyards are a huge help to employees’ mental health. Furnish them with comfortable seating like the durable but elegant Slant Chair.

Investing in well-thought-out furnishing solutions is integral to creating healthcare spaces that prioritize patient comfort, safety, and overall well-being. By incorporating elements of zen, ergonomic furniture, and quality finishes, healthcare facilities can contribute to positive outpatient experiences and support the diverse needs of patients, caregivers, and staff.

Collaborating with healthcare buying groups can streamline the process of creating supportive spaces within healthcare facilities. These groups can assist in selecting furnishings that align with the unique needs of healthcare settings. For inquiries on creating spaces that support patients, contact

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