When the White House last month held a roundtable on a Health & Human Services initiative to help health care facilities enhance their resilience to extreme weather and other events, it gave a new level of attention to an issue that's been bubbling below the surface for a while.
The first article in this edition of Health Facilities Management Design News covers this topic with a feature on four hospitals that have taken direct hits from Mother Nature and rebuilt stronger than before. As demonstrated by these case studies, the risk-based planning and research-based design brought to bear on this issue can lead to some innovative architectural solutions.
Innovation also characterizes the work going into planning the nation's emergency departments (ED). As discussed in the second article of Design News, industry architects attempting to improve ED flow to handle demographic and economic challenges have a variety of tools and strategies at their disposal.
Often related to the increasing use of EDs is another hot design topic: behavioral health. Our third article looks at this topic from the perspective of codes, standards and references, covering the many useful documents that are available to help health facilities professionals build for this growing demographic.
Finally, in recognition of rapidly developing advances in imaging technology, we close out this month's Design News with an article focusing on the architectural ramifications of the Facilities Guidelines Institute's standards for imaging unit design.
Whether fighting the elements, an influx of new patients, making accommodations for those with special needs or planning for the inevitable march of technology, health facility planning, design and construction professionals are facing a wide range of challenges. How they fare will shape health care delivery for decades to come.