An HFMA Healthcare Financial Pulse Resource
Cost-effectiveness in construction depends on a keen understanding of use of space, particularly strategies that support flexibility.
A case in point is a current project designed by California-based architectural firm Ratcliff. The facility features a centralized patient intake/recovery unit for invasive procedures, be it a cardiac catheterization or a hip replacement.
Terry L. Kurrasch, FACHE, senior strategist/planner at Ratcliff explains: "All patients arriving for procedures will go to one place furnished with a large number of beds with functions that swing throughout the day. Early in the morning, beds will be occupied by patients being prepped, and then as the day progresses, more and more of the beds will be used for recovery and ultimately discharge."
Another form of flexibility comes with an appreciation that different kinds of projects need different kinds of construction. Ratcliff encourages its clients to design and build facilities to appropriate specifications for the service to be provided.
"You don't need to build an entire hospital at the level required to provide inpatient care, says Gary M. Burk, AIA, NCARB principal. "And there are a whole host of services that don't have to meet OSHPD-level standards at all. This may mean you can afford new services on campus-home health, for example, or sports medicine, or cardiac rehabilitation-that wouldn't be feasible financially if they had to be situated in an acute-care setting."
Publication Date: Monday, October 26, 2009