Jo Goddard, director of Just Imagine Contract Interiors, outlines the guiding principles that should underpin effective care home design
We believe that a well-designed healthcare facility will support the provision of excellent healthcare; that better design leads to better care. Our success stems from balancing the needs of the client with a sense of ‘home’ for the resident. While it plays a very important role, comfort in healthcare is so much more than the décor. The environments in which we live and work have a profound effect on our physical and psychological wellbeing – it is no different for people living in care environments. The design and décor must meet strict health and safety regulations. The décor within each room and shared area should be carefully considered to ensure people feel at home from the second they arrive. There is a market need to provide residents with an experience which connects them to self and home, while offering the support that is needed. We ensure that our designs are adaptable yet non-clinical and encompass best practice in designing for the elderly and dementia.
Residents should have space to enjoy a class or entertain guests in a range of carefully zoned areas or private dining room. Spaces could include a cinema, activity space, hair salon, or shop. Home comforts such as café facilities and kitchenettes provide independence for both residents and guests. If possible, residents should have a choice of eating in the café or, if they prefer a restaurant experience, they could eat in the dining room. The key to good design is the provision of options.
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