Future of healthcare design

It can be tricky to predict the future of healthcare. Experts struggle to determine where the industry might be headed.

What does the future of healthcare design hold? What will the industry look like in a couple of years? If the last 10 years are any indication, it will be remarkably different than it looks today. And that’s a good thing, any way you look at it.

The healthcare industry is on the brink of massive change.

Let’s take a look into a crystal ball and try to guess the ways healthcare will evolve.

Healthcare is in a transitional era. New technologies have changed so much about how doctors work.

Future of healthcare design – 7 trends

Patient-first approach

The future of healthcare design has everything to do with the patients, it’s not about you. The patient-first approach to better healthcare will keep getting more important. It’s a way of transforming hospital services for the better. Sometimes it’s easy to forget that patients are customers and hospitals treat them as symptoms. Putting patients first takes a shift of mind. You have to listen to the patients, treat them like a human, try to understand, show empathy and make them feel really cared for. The patient should be at the heart of every decision and all changes. The patient-first approach is a continuous process of improvement within existing processes that leads to measurable improvements for both patients and staff.

Patient experience

The patient experience embraces interactions that patients have with the health care system, including their health plans, and all communication with doctors, nurses, and staff in medical offices.

Patients’ expectations are increasing daily. Enhancing patient experience positively impacts patient engagement, improves the reputation of the medical office, helps build loyalty, attracts new patients.

Improving patient experience also results in greater employee satisfaction, reducing turnover.

Adding more natural light into the space, for example floor-to-ceiling windows and glass curtain walls, reduce the need for artificial lighting and help improve patient and staff moods and the experience is much better.


“The only thing constant is change.” That old saying is especially relevant when it comes to incorporating healthcare design. Innovation denotes new, better, more effective ways of solving problems.

Healthcare is experiencing an explosion of innovations designed to improve the patient experience. All healthcare organizations are already facing challenges like improving quality of the services they offer, reducing waste, increasing efficiency, lowering the costs. That’s where innovation comes in handy.

Flexible and adaptable spaces

What do adaptable spaces have to do with the future of healthcare design? A clinic is not just a clinic anymore. What worked back in the day, will no longer cut it. Medical offices have many different functions and offer a variety of services which mean they have to be able to adapt to the changes.

Healthcare designers see the benefits of flexible, multipurpose spaces. Due to the ever-changing and rapidly advancing medical technology, and shifts in the ways clinics function, it’s more important than ever for medical offices to be designed with adaptability and flexibility in mind.

What would the consequences of not taking into account flexibility and adaptability in healthcare design be? Nine times out of 10, the answer would be cost.

Smart hospital

A smart hospital could be defined as the development of buildings that are more sustainable, safe and smarter. New technologies and innovation help you regulate the energy consumption of the building; Smart hospitals improve the productivity of health staff and help monitoring patients through intelligent beds or floors that help identify movement at night and notify nurses if there are problems.

What are the advantages of smart hospitals?

  • State-of-the-art medical office
  • Specialized medical assistance
  • Decreased waiting time
  • Maximum flexibility: adaptable to diverse contexts and future changes
  • Great energy efficiency
  • Possibility of personalization from the start.

Sustainable healthcare

Sustainable healthcare encompasses the social, economic, and environmental facets of any project. Problems include carbon emissions decrease, energy use, reducing clinical waste, recycling, resource extraction (renewable or not renewable), etc.

Example: Dell Children’s Medical Center of Central Texas is proud to be the first hospital in the world to earn platinum certification from the U.S. Green Building Council for outstanding Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED). This designation means that the hospital has exceeded environmental standards in five areas: sustainable site development, water savings, energy efficiency, selection of materials and resources and indoor environmental quality.

Artificial intelligence

When it comes to the future of healthcare design, artificial intelligence has healthy written all over. AI seems poised to revolutionize medical diagnostics, treatment and research and to transform the way medical offices collect, understand and use data on patient health. Artificial intelligence means that medical offices and clinics will be able to use AI to treat patients on a whole new level. For example, AI could help diagnosing patients in parts of the world where there is a shortage of doctors, without the doctor having to actually be on location and physically see the patient.

Mitra’s take on the future of healthcare design

This is what Mitra Pakdaman Silva, founder of LA HealthCare Design thinks when it comes to the future of healthcare design:

“I believe the future of healthcare is all about innovation and experience. The regular healthcare format, as far as practice and space is no longer acceptable for patients because the awareness of what is possible has arisen so much. It’s all about changing the definition of how healthcare is serving the patient, promoting health, from the way the space is designed, comfortable and homey, having the feeling of lounge and hospitality, not a typical waiting room, all white.”

“Patient experience is crucial. It’s not just the services, the space is also very important. For example, the quality of the air, to not smell like medications when you enter. Lighting is also important, the light can be used as way-finding to subconsciously guide the patients through the medical office,” she adds.

It’s an exciting time to be practicing healthcare, don’t you think? Just imagine how much more is possible considering these trends about the future of healthcare design.

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