Exam rooms are an integral part of any medical facility. Special considerations should be made during the exam room design process to ensure patients are as comfortable as possible and confident that the room affords the privacy required for medical conversations. There are a variety of factors proven to have a direct impact on whether a patient feels at ease in an exam room or distressed. Architects who are working on renovations and new layouts for hospitals, doctor offices, and clinics have a challenge in incorporating all of the functional requirements of a medical exam space in to a very compact area while designing an environment that minimizes the “clinical” feel for patients.
Fortunately, AD Systems specializes in working with professional architects, designers, and facility managers to assist in creating an exam room spaces that will positively influence a patient’s overall experience and satisfaction and create low maintenance, efficient spaces for medical building owners. However, this is just one element to consider for improved patient exam rooms. Below are a few things every architect should keep in mind as they design modern exam room spaces:
Doors don’t generally get the recognition they deserve. They play a major role in construction and serve numerous purposes. With the interior sliding doors that AD Systems provides, an exam room design can be taken to a whole new level. AD systems sliding doors are unique in that they are designed to deliver optimal acoustical performance, which is critical in healthcare facilities for both privacy and recovery reasons, while also complying with ADA guidelines. AD Systems exam room doors also allow for far more space to be utilized efficiently than with a swing door and its associated approach clearances, particularly when a very large clear opening is required for bariatric or equipment purposes. AD Systems offers a range of hardware options so that hardware functionality is not lost when the choice is made to specify a sliding door.
Harsh, bright lights may be the norm for a lot of healthcare establishments, but when it comes to exam room design, that may not be the best route to go. Considering the sensitive environment and challenging conversations that go on in exam rooms between patients and their doctors, lighting should be installed accordingly. Softer lights are typically more appropriate for this type of confidential, and often emotional, setting. Portable floor and desk lamps can provide additional lighting where necessary. When possible, the addition of a transom lite over the top of a door or a sidelite with privacy preserving frosted, etched or otherwise translucent glass can facilitate bring in daylight or borrowing lite from adjacent spaces. Using laminated glazing in lieu of tempered glass ensures acoustical privacy is maintained.
Space in Exam Room Design
Space is another significant component in exam room design. Architects frequently don’t have much space to work with, and with the furniture, tools, and technology that need to fit into a room, things can get crowded quite quickly and the patient’s comfort becomes an afterthought. Exam rooms can be intimidating enough that patients shouldn’t also have to deal with not having the proper space to change, put their belongings, or invite their support system to join them. It’s vital for architects, designers, and facility managers to recognize this and make adjustments in their layout plans.
These are a few important details that can make all the difference in exam room design. AD Systems works with clients nationwide to help them choose sliding door systems that are just right for their particular project and application.