Three of the country’s leading health care architectural firms announced Wednesday they have merged to form Environments for Health Architecture (E4H).

The merger of MorrisSwitzer Environments for Health, Ascension Group Architects and daSilva Architects into EH4 represents more than three decades of health care facility design experience combined. The firm’s portfolio includes more than 5,000 health care projects worth more than $5 billion.

EH4’s client list includes about 275 hospitals or health care systems in some 25 states across the nation, says Dan Morris, partner, E4H. Projects include community hospitals, academic medical centers, children's hospitals, mental health facilities, ambulatory care centers, rehabilitation facilities, assisted living and medical office buildings. 

E4H’s 130 health care planners and architects are based in offices across the United States, including New York; Boston; Dallas; Portland, Maine; and Burlington, Vt. Besides design services, E4H will offer include health care planning, architecture and interior design.

Each of the new firm’s five offices will maintain its current leadership team and staff, building upon existing strengths to meet the demands of an evolving health care industry.

“Health care providers and life sciences businesses have a unique set of needs; balancing the delivery of care with business imperatives requires a deep understanding of this rapidly changing industry,” Morris says.

“E4H now offers both a knowledge of the local health care market and access to an expanded talent and experience pool that will benefit our clients enormously,” he says, adding that the firm is well positioned for industry growth.  

The ongoing consolidation of health care systems through mergers and acquisitions created the need to offer a range of services to large health systems with complex needs spread across the Unites States, Morris says.
With its practice devoted to health care and health innovation, E4H will focus on delivering Lean solutions to provide value, maximize the quality of care and reduce costs, Morris says.   

The firm will address the challenges posed by modern health care facility architecture with “smart facility design,” which reduces operating costs, supports new care models, provides flexibility and promotes wellness, Morris says.

E4H's LEED-Accredited staff work with clients to ensure each design accomplishes the team's sustainability goals. Strategies include:

  • Use of recycled and low-emitting materials.
  • Specification of energy-efficient lighting, plumbing and HVAC equipment.
  • Integrate high performance envelope design.
  • Explore green construction options to create efficiencies.
  • Study site orientation to optimize solar advantages.

Going forward the firm also plans to utilize virtual reality for its design process. Virtual reality can communicate design to users, assist in engineering coordination, create mockups for construction planning and more.

MorrisSwitzer E4H, the New England branch of E4H, has been a full service architecture firm committed exclusively to the design of mostly nonprofit health care facilities for more than 25 years. The group has extensive experience in master planning, Morris says.

daSilva E4H, based in New York, has 35 years of health care design innovation experience. The team has worked extensively at most of the major medical centers in New York, New Jersey and Connecticut.

Ascension Group E4H develops award-winning architecture and interior design for facilities across the South and Western United States. Launched in 2001 in the Dallas-Fort Worth area of Texas, Ascension Group specializes in rapid design processes, large project implementation, and innovative design for physicians and corporate health care clients.

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