Category Archives: Design

Top Healthcare Design Links In February

Below are our top 3 healthcare design links in February:

6 Tips for Taking Good Install Photos On Your Smart Phone
Last month we shared a post on how to take good install pics on your smart phone.  Tips included; choosing the right perspective, clearing the clutter, choosing correct lighting, use a tripod, lock the focus and choosing the right angle.

4 Tips for Designing the Hospital of the Future
Using an evidence-based design (EBD) approach, DLR Group determined the hospital of the future includes lighting and temperature controlled by patients, personal information systems through an interactive television, acuity-adaptable rooms and more.

How to Effectively Use Color in Treatment Facilities
This article admits there is no one-size-fits-all approach in using color in treatment center design, there are some general tips.  The color shouldn’t jump out, but instead feel light and happy in the space. Accent colors to consider for treatment centers include pastel hues of blue and green; warm purple or violet; warm yellow and orange; and taupe.

6 Tips for Taking Good Install Photos on Your Smart Phone

We all love looking at beautiful installation photos.  They help us feel inspired and provide the ability to visualize the vast variations of furniture and fabric options available. When you send us your pictures of Stance Healthcare furniture in healing environments, you could receive $150!*  It’s also an excellent way for you to promote your project and gain exposure.  Did I mention you could receive $150?  If you’re not comfortable with taking photos of furniture and healthcare interiors, I’ve included some guidelines below to help you get started:

  1. Choose the Right Perspective.
    Think about the furniture piece you want to capture before taking the photo. Think about if you want to photograph one piece of furniture or an entire healthcare space. Walk around the room and see where the best view is to capture the overall essence of the furniture in its environment.
  1. Clear the Clutter
    Keep it simple.  The environment should be clear of any clutter, enabling the piece of furniture to be the focal point. Remove magazines and pamphlets from tables and pillows from chairs.  If in doubt – take it out. 
  1. Choose the Correct Lighting
    The type of lighting found in healthcare environments may not necessarily be conducive to taking photos.  However, turn off your flash and take advantage of using as much natural light as possible. Nowadays, hospitals are built with more natural light to promote well-being, so make sure to open up the blinds. The light should fill the entire area you are photographing.  The best time to take photos that incorporate natural light is in the morning or late in the afternoon.
  1. Use A Tripod
    If possible, use a tripod.  This is especially important in low lighting to help prevent blurriness. It can also help ensure your photos are level. There are many options available for inexpensive compact smart phone tripods – some are even able to wrap around poles, have magnetic feet and a remote shutter!
  1. Lock the Focus
    If you want to prevent your smartphone from attempting to grab a different subject in the frame, lock the focal point on the furniture you want to capture. To do this, simply tap your phone screen on the key furniture piece you want to focus on and your smartphone will do the rest!
  1. Choose the Right Angle
    To highlight the furniture in the healing space, you will likely want to take your photo horizontally.  You’ll also want to make sure you hold the phone flat to the wall to prevent any distortion.  Move around the room taking at least 5 – 10 photos and you’ll be sure to have at least one winning photograph!

If all else fails, hire a photographer to take the photo for you 😉

This post was written in collaboration with David Briggs Photography.


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5 Considerations: Specifying Behavioral Healthcare Furniture

1 in 5 patients admitted to an acute psychiatric unit may commit an act of violence, and between 75% and 100% of nursing staff on acute psychiatric units have been assaulted by a patient at some stage in their careers. That’s an alarming number!  Fortunately, there are things a facility can do to minimize the risk to patients, staff, and visitors. Investing in furnishings specifically designed and manufactured for behavioral health facilities is one consideration.

Here are five things to consider when purchasing furnishings for your next Behavioral Health project:

This is the most important consideration when specifying furniture for behavioral health facilities.  Seating designed for safety will inhibit concealment, feature anti-ligature components, have no sharp points or edges, include tamper-resistant hardware, break-resistant glides, and floor-wall mount options.

Furniture can help combat self-destructive behavior; it should be movable, yet too heavy to throw. Tables and seating finishes should be specified to deter destruction that leads to objects that can inflict harm to themselves and others.  High-pressure laminate, solid surface, and polyurethane surfaces are application specific finish options and can be used where appropriate. Specifying healthcare-grade upholstery materials provides additional durability.

It’s true – the behavioral health landscape has changed.  The principles of Concierge Healthcare Design are being applied to Behavioral Health Facilities to help ease the anxiety of patients, caregivers, and caretakers.  Furniture is specified with residential appeal, and materials should be specified for their symbolic meaning rather than for pure functionality. Avoid complex patterns, color stimulation, and reflective surfaces.

Infection Control
Healthcare-acquired infections are always a concern in any healthcare setting. Seating should be easy-to-clean with a 3-way clean sweep around seat cushions, contain no crevices that encourage concealment and provide textiles and finishes that withstand stringent cleaning agents.

Furniture should be selected to help patients, and visitors feel at ease. Upholstered furniture provides the ultimate comfort for seating.  Multiple types of seating and sizes should also be specified to give patients and visitors the choice of finding furniture most comfortable for them.

5 Resources for Behavioral Health Designers

Behavioral Health design is a critical component of patient care that comes with its own set of challenges. Consideration must be given to the healing environment, populations served, current research and industry regulations. Below are some resources to help you get started on your next Behavioral Health design project:

Design for Mental and Behavioral Health

Design for Mental and Behavioral Health
By Mardelle McCuskey Shepley and Samira Pasha
This book summarizes design principles and design research for individuals who are intending to design new mental and behavioral health facilities and those wishing to evaluate the quality of their existing facilities. The authors discuss mental and behavioral health systems, design guidelines, design research and existing standards, and provide examples of best practices.

Design Guide for the Built Environment of Behavioral Health Facilities
The Facility Guidelines Institute – By James M. Hunt and David M. Sine
This design guide provides fundamental design requirements for behavioral health facilities and helps providers and design teams develop physical environments that support safe and effective behavioral health services. It also includes best practices for protecting patients and staff.

Common Mistakes in Designing Psychiatric Hospitals
The Facility Guidelines Institute – By James M. Hunt and David M. Sine
This document addresses patient and staff safety concerns when designing behavioral health facilities, the general layout for psychiatric units, as well as the varying levels of precautions. It also includes a risk assessment matrix to use in the planning process.

Design Research and Behavioral Health Facilities
The Center for Health Design – By Mardelle M. Shepley and Samira Pasha
This document is focused on linking research to behavioral health design and summarizes research findings from over 115 articles. Ultimately the document provides design considerations and best practices for behavioral health facilities, as suggested by research results and experts in the field.

Mental Health Facilities
Department of Veterans Affairs
This design guide provides technical architectural and engineering specifications, as well as emphasizing principles and strategies for building state-of-the-art, recovery-oriented environments for mental health settings in the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA).

4 Behavioral Health Educational Sessions You’ll Want to Attend

Healthcare Design Expo + Conference

Healthcare Design Expo + Conference – November 2017

The Healthcare Design Expo + Conference taking place this November has an abundance of educational sessions, workshops, and tours for attendees to take advantage of.  This year the conference is offering four educational sessions discussing recent developments in behavioral health, and the various environments and design factors that foster effective care. Sunday is jam-packed with these informative sessions led by industry thought leaders:

Design for Mental and Behavioral Health
Sunday, November 12, 2017: 9:30 AM – 10:30 AM

his session will provide an overview of design research on mental and behavioral health facilities. The narrative includes a systematic review of the literature on design research; summarizes population research; and provides case studies for facilities including acute care, outpatient and emergency care, residential care, and the treatment of chemical dependency. The session is ideal for individuals who are intending to design new mental and behavioral health facilities and those wishing to evaluate the quality of their existing facilities. Presenters will also discuss mental and behavioral health models, design guidelines, design research, and existing standards, and provide examples of best practice.

Walk in their Footsteps: Research into Elders with Neurocognitive Disorders and their Environment
Sunday, November 12, 10:45 AM – 11:45 AM

Neurocognitive disorders often affect the elder population, resulting in memory and cognition issues with behaviors that can include wandering, aggression, or apathy. This session will present the results of a research study done using a customized iPad application that tracked the behavior, walking patterns, and repetitive motions of an elderly population with dementia. This template will specifically focus on the interaction between elements of the designed environment and the person’s resulting behavior. Attendees will explore how the designed environment can mitigate neurocognitive disorder symptoms. Take away this tool that can be used in pre-design and post-design phases.

Designing for Adolescents in Mental Health Crisis: A Story of Research, Innovation, and Hope
Sunday, November 12, 1:45 PM – 2:45 PM

Adolescence can be a tumultuous time in one’s life. Mental health conditions often surface during this stage, and it may be the first time that some patients enter an inpatient behavioral health unit. How can design best support this patient population that is transitioning from childhood to adulthood? Learn how a design team utilized research, Lean processes, and innovation to solve the challenges of this unique patient population for the 27-bed Adolescent Behavioral Health Unit in Tacoma, Wash. Find out how design can support a seclusion- and restraint-free care model and how pushing beyond the conventions of behavioral healthcare design was achieved.

The Medical Behavioral Unit: Enhancing Patient Safety and Experience Through Design
Sunday, November 12, 2017: 3:00 PM – 4:00 PM

With no known precedent, Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia pursued a vision to develop a new pediatric patient care unit: one that would meet the requirements and licensure of an acute care unit, but would provide a safe and supportive environment for patients with a comorbid developmental, behavioral, or psychiatric diagnosis. A multidisciplinary team worked together to envision, plan, and design an environment to support a new model of care for this unique population. Key elements of the project—a remodel of an existing unit—include patient, family, and staff health; circadian lighting; biophilic design; and safety.

Biophilic Design in Behavioral Healthcare

Using nature to inspire calming and comforting spaces

Biophilic Design in BHBiophilic design is defined as the basic human inclination to affiliate with nature. At its core, it is simply the “love of nature:· The idea of biophilic design resonates with behavioral health as it combines therapeutic spaces with a sense of calm and comfort.

This type of design strategy does not only involve images of nature as decoration to create a sense of safety and well-being for behavioral health patients but also helps them on a deeper level by incorporating the cycles, patterns and spatial qualities of nature. Careful consideration must be given to avoid literal representations of imagery that may trigger an undesirable response.

Biophilic design includes a natural or artificial lighting system that changes throughout the day, reflective of a human’s circadian rhythm. It also includes artwork of nature, patient rooms that overlook green space or gardens, and public spaces that are comfortable and provide an unobstructed view of nature when seated.

Sounds and textures can also be incorporated into the overall design. Sounds that are reminiscent of being outdoors can provide patients with comfort, familiarity and possible improvements in mental health. Choosing biomorphic patterns, as well as natural textures and finishes for furniture can also help create a sense of comfort.

Stance Healthcare offers multiple collections of coordinating patient room and public space furniture that encourage a sense of well-being by using nature as an inspiration.These heavy-duty furniture products were developed in consultation with healthcare interior designers, behavioral health practitioners, facility managers and housekeeping staff. All of Stance Healthcare’s furniture for behavioral health applications can be specified in natural textures and finishes; adhering to the biophilic design philosophies that result in soothing and therapeutic spaces.

Top 3 Links for August

Below are our most popular social media posts for the month of August:

Midwest Representation
Everyone was interested to read about our new representatives in the Midwest.  Lyons Company LLC now represents Stance Healthcare products in Kansas, Missouri, Iowa and Nebraska. Principal, Dick Lyons, has been in the contract furniture business for 45 years and established the Lyons Company over 23 years ago.

Words to Live By
On #NationalBookLoversDay Carl Kennedy, President at Stance Healthcare, shared his Top 5 notable books on personal growth and development. This article reflects on his personal key takeaways from each book and how they have shaped the decisions he makes on a daily basis.

Top 20 Most Beautiful Hospitals

The 20 Most Beautiful Hospitals in the U.S. (2017)
As reported by Soliant Health, this article highlights the Top 20 hospitals in America.  The voting public decides the rankings based on which hospital they believe makes patients feel better upon arrival. We’ve also included this list on Stance Healthcare’s own Pinterest board.


Top 3 Healthcare Design Links For March

Our top links in March were solely focused on Healthcare Design…

Case StudyCase Study- St. Mary’s Medical Center
This case study looks at the remodeling of St. Mary’s Family Medicine Center, an NCQA certified patient centered medical home. In their latest transformation, St. Mary’s objective was to design three differentiated spaces while still providing a cohesive healing environment.

Bad Hospital Design is Making Us Sicker
It’s no secret that hospital acquired infections and falls are major issues for many hospitals due to poor design.  This article looks at additional bad design features and highlights the need to change the way we build, maintain and work in hospitals in order to promote rest and healing.

Design Can Provide Comfort for Palliative, Hospice Care Patients and Families
Hospice’s aim to comfort a patient near the end of life, rather than focusing on a cure.  This articles discusses how aesthetic design must help patients and family members cope with the situation, in addition to providing private places to talk with members of the care team.


Top 3 Links For February

In February, it was evident that people were interested in reading about trending topics. Our top social media links focused on design trends as well as an article discussing the continually trending topic of big data.

6 Behavioral Health Design Trends
The 6 behavioral health design trends discussed in this article not only help reduce the stigma associated with mental health issues, but also fully address the needs of patients’ physical and mental well-being.  They include quick patient assessments, integrated care, telemedicine, inpatient beds, strengthened outpatient services and specialty programs.

We’re Finally Realizing the Promise of Big Data
Combining predictive and prescriptive analytics holds enormous potential for healthcare providers to improve efficiency and quality of care.  This article states that by tracking historical trends, hospitals can predict disease outbreaks in their community and brace for an influx of patients.

Words To Live By
Carl Kennedy, President of Stance Healthcare, and reading enthusiast, published an article on LinkedIn last month highlighting his top 5 books for personal growth.  In this article, you’ll find out why the book titled “Today Matters” is his all time favorite, and which book inspires him to “Just Do It!”.

CEU Program Hosted by Stance Healthcare

Understanding the Rapidly Changing Healthcare Market

As a design professional, CEU’s can help improve your competencies, knowledge and skills in specific areas of interior design.  At Stance Healthcare we are advocates of continuing education within the industry, especially as it relates to healthcare.  That’s why we decided to launch our own CEU program with the support of industry professionals and approval from the Interior Design Continuing Education Council (IDCEC).

With the Affordable Care Act (ACA) being a hot topic of conversation, it’s important to remain educated on the rapidly changing healthcare market.  Our course Side Effects is designed to enhance basic understanding of current policy issues and some of the secondary effects we see in the healthcare industry. With 20+ years’ experience, Suzanne Story teaches strategies for CEU Side Effects Imageapproaching challenges and provides examples of planning, design and emerging markets as ways to capitalize on the changes.

By taking a broad look at these ideas, we hope to inspire you to find some creative ways to turn challenges into new opportunities.  It is an ever-changing healthcare landscape and examining successes, trends and partnerships can also lead to ideas for new revenue streams.

Click here for more details or email