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Design Solutions

‘Design Solutions’ is a section dedicated to highlighting products designed to improve human health, wellbeing and quality of life in healthcare, education, custodial, commercial, workplace and urban environments, providing architects, designers, health professionals and managers, project managers, facility operators and estates directors with new ideas for designing better quality environments.

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More than good looks
Two Draeger products are recognised in the 2009 iF product design awards
. The annual International Forum Design (iF) product design awards recognise products which succeed in combining functionality with convenience and aesthetics as well as satisfying the requirements for innovation.

A total of 2,808 products from 39 countries were submitted in 2009, from which the international selection committee presented 802 with awards for superior product design.
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Clean your hands
When the Credit Valley Hospital (CVH) was commissioned in 1985, drinking fountains were not viewed as a threatening source of communicable diseases. However, faced with growing concerns after an outbreak of C. difficile in an Ontario hospital, CVH needed to pursue new infection control measures.

Farrow Partnership Architects (FPA) saw that CVH’s drinking fountains, which had been decommissioned but still had an existing built-in source of water, could be converted into hand washing units as a positive force for infection control.
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Take a seat

The Norbury Ward is an Intensive Care Unit for Adult Acute Mental Health patients at St George’s Hospital Stafford.

In 2005, the trust were awarded a grant of £35,000 to improve the environment. A design team, including staff and service users worked on the project, a part of which was the design of the Norbury Lounge Chair.
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Safe and secure
Claimed to be a leap forward in healthcare fenestration, the award winning Safevent window allows patients and staff in a secure environment to fully open a window in complete safety with no restrictions, allowing maximum natural ventilation.

It not only has the potential to save lives with its anti-ligature properties, but also to improve the lives of the patients and staff in facilities that use it.
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Focused on people
Sheikh Khalifa Medical City (SKMC) is the only center in the United Arab Emirates delivering fully integrated adult cardiovascular services.

And when the opportunity arose to revamp its adult cardiac catheterization lab, the 550-bed acute care hospital became the first in Abu Dhabi to offer Ambient Experience – an optimised medical environment harnessing the synergy of architecture, design and technology.
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Integrated operations
Kathleen Armstrong explores how new developments in surgical technology and procedures are changing the face of the operating theatre
.

Professor Erik Fosse has a vision. As head of the Interventional Centre at Norway’s Rikshospitalet, he is leading the way in new surgical and interventional techniques that are changing not only the face of surgery but also the face of the operating theatre itself.
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Like clockwork
As cost pressures in healthcare systems increase, solutions, such as the I-Suite from Stryker, which improves efficiencies in the operating room is a key driver for investing in high-tech surgical suites.

More than 3,500 i-Suite operating rooms have been set up at hospitals and clinics, universities and academic institutions across the globe. Its ergonomic arrangement and placement of all machines and medical equipment is said to ensure smooth-running workflows and less stress for the staff.
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Pick and go
Transporting patients between wards while monitoring their vital signs takes time and effort. Clinical staff have to disconnect the bedside monitoring system and connect the patient to a transport monitor.

This process can also be dangerous because the patient is not being monitored while the monitors are being exchanged. Monitoring functionality is also limited during transport, with the risk that the patient’s vital data during this period may be lost.
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The rhythm of light
AmbientLine, from Trumpf, is said to offer the world its first lighting system integrated into ceiling pendants for use in intensive care and operating room environments, easing workloads for the staff, supporting patient recovery and increasing the sense of wellbeing for patients, staff and visitors.

Patients are frequently exposed to extreme lighting conditions, especially in the ICU. Constantly shining bright lights and frequent checks with full room lighting disrupt the patients’ circadian rhythms. In addition to other stress factors, lighting is often a hindrance to patients’ speedy recovery.
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System integration
Sieveking-Krankenhaus is now home to one of Europe’s most modern high-tech operating rooms. Opened this month, the new facility incorporates a striking design with blue glazed walls framing the state-of-the-art operating room, and two large windows providing access to daylight.

Incorporating the latest technology, the unit allows digitalised X-ray images and endoscopy findings to be directly transmitted to the surgeons’ screens. Live links to other hospitals, practices or to national and international congresses can also be set up.
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Wake up, it’s a beautiful morning
The Philips Wake-up Light 2008 is designed to evoke a feeling of sunrise with a steadily increasing light intensity emanating from the light itself.

Smaller than previous dawn simulators, and with a more user-friendly interface and new materials, the iconic lampshade offers a contemporary aesthetic and more modern design that integrates seamlessly with its environment.
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A sense of home

Seating from the new Knightsbridge Mental Health Furniture collection is helping to establish a therapeutic environment within a pioneering new mental health complex in Leicestershire, UK.

The Herschel Prins Centre is a specialist low-secure facility run by Leicestershire Partnership NHS Trust. Furnished in line with an ethos of accessibility and homeliness, the centre ensures an ambience which encourages both respect and courtesy from patients and regular visits by their friends and families.
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Classic styling
Classic styling and essential practicality are claimed to be the key features of a new concept in flame-retardant fabrics, created by Panaz Healthcare.

Designed for care homes and supported living environments, ‘Richmond’ comprises a harmonious balance of formal and freehand florals.
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Natural rhythms
Inspired by the healing benefits of nature, coupled with simple symmetry and modern abstracts, Secret Garden, the latest creation from Mosaic by Skopos, is a relaxing and rejuvenating collection ideally suited to enhance a variety of healthcare interiors.

Secret Garden has been created from a desire to work with nature’s own rhythm and the known benefits nature can have on an individual’s recovery rate. Such holistic benefits may include relaxation, stress reduction, decreased mental fatigue, restored mental clarity and an increased sense of wellbeing.
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The power to change lives

Solar and wind-up lighting will soon be available to Africa’s poorest people, thanks to a new deal between Philips and the Dutch government. 

The Netherlands is aiming to reduce poverty in sub-Saharan Africa by supplying sustainable lighting to its poorest citizens. A Public Private Partnership (PPP) between Eindhoven-based Philips and the Dutch government will see the development of a new generation of solar- and man-powered lighting, in order to help fulfil the UN’s eight Millennium Development Goals to cut poverty by 2015.
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Inside out

Light-filled geodesic domes – more commonly used as conservatories, spa-pool covers or artist’s studios – have found a new use in the healthcare sector.

Mental health patients using rehabilitation services at Mandalay House in Aylesbury are using a Solardome as a sociable garden social space that can be used year-round: Oxfordshire and Buckinghamshire Mental Health Partnership NHS Trust was awarded £35,000 by the King’s Fund as part of their ‘Enhancing the Healing Environment’ programme for the dome, which acts as a striking focal point in the garden.
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Turn on, turn off

Magnetic stimulation is a non-invasive and painless method of exciting neurons using strong, time varying magnetic fields generated by a stimulating coil held close to the intended site of stimulation.

Used for research, diagnosis, prognosis and therapy in nervous and psychiatric disorders, it is able to stimulate the human cortex, spinal roots and peripheral nerves.
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Innovation frontier
James Barlow describes the planning, delivery and operational challenges of creating effective healthcare infrastructure systems in a period of rapid social and technological change.

The healthcare system is one of the most complex and rapidly changing organisational and technical environments in advanced economies. In most countries many stakeholders from the public, private and voluntary sectors are involved. The mechanisms for funding, payment and reimbursement for services are often convoluted. The policy context may be dynamic, with governments regularly introducing new targets and objectives. And all this is taking place against a backdrop of evolving patterns of demand associated with shifts in demography and morbidity.
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