Walk This Way: Hospital Design Diagnostic Finds Efficiencies for Nurses

Jennifer Thew, RN, February 14, 2017

Walk This Way: Hospital Design Diagnostic Finds Efficiencies for Nurses

Thanks to field research on workflow, ProMedica Toledo Hospital cut nurses' walking distance in half. Now they can spend more time with patients.

You don't know what you don't know until you know it.

That's the lesson leaders at ProMedica Toledo Hospital in Ohio learned during the design of its 615,000 square-foot patient tower set to 2019.

As part of the design process, the organization took part in research to identify and refine ways to improve nursing care and efficiencies, including distance traveled during a shift.

Architects from HKS, Inc., the firm designing the building, approached Alison Avendt, OT, MBA, vice president of operations, at ProMedica Toledo Hospital about doing the research.

"We have a building that we opened in 2008, so they wanted to look at how we were using the spaces [there], and get feedback from nursing on how it was working," Avendt says.

"That was really attractive to me because I heard we had issues with the building that we were in and there were many things that we wish we could have done better. I thought if we could do a good design diagnostic and learn something from that, it would really help guide our design work."

Jennifer Thew, RN

Jennifer Thew, RN is the senior nursing editor at HealthLeaders Media.

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