Designers for healthcare

Spot plan multidisciplinary outpatient clinic

Flexible use of space at the outpatient clinic

Multidisciplinary collaboration within a new outpatient department concept

How do you design a new outpatient clinic together?

Increasing pressure on care requires new ways of working in the outpatient clinic; so that specialisms can work together more easily, rooms and resources can be shared and where an efficiently organised facilities service unburdens of the (care) staff.

But how do you design an outpatient clinic where multiple specialisms work together? An environment where healthcare providers flexibly share resources and spaces, and where the patient easily finds their way and have a calm experience?

Panton helped Antonius Care Group with the optimisation of a sketch design for the outpatient clinic centre within Het Vlie Health Centre. In this centre, various care parties join forces to offer complete and connecting care in the region.

The starting point

At the new outpatient clinic, 16 specialisms will work together. The consultation rooms are located around a shared mid-office. This is an area with work and consultation areas and storage of shared resources. Thus, patient and staff flows are separated. This provides peace of mind for patients and care staff. The specialisms will share generic consultation and examination rooms, making efficient use of the available square metres.

The process

First, we mapped the working processes and corresponding needs of the all specialisms and their patient groups. For this purpose, interviews were held with the specialisms involved. For each specialism, we investigated which and how many generic and specific rooms are needed. We also looked at how work processes will change with the new shared mid-office and space sharing in the future.

Including employees in the design process not only avoided unexpected bottlenecks, but also created a sense of commitment. This was important in creating support for a new way of working.

We also mapped the specific needs of different patient groups: How mobile are patients and what does that mean for walking distances or, for example, the distance to the toilet in the outpatient clinic? How long on average does a patient stay at the outpatient clinic? And do patients need to visit multiple rooms? How important is peace and privacy and how large is the flow of patients coming to the outpatient clinic per part of the day?

Some examples of the insights we gained:

  • Cardiology, geriatrics and pulmonary medicine alternately use the rooms close to the entrance, where there is ample space for mobility scooters and an area for family members.
  • There is sufficient distance between gynaecology and paediatrics.
  • Urology patients can move from the consultation room to the POK scopy room and uroflowmetry in privacy.
  • Staff in the busy dermatology clinic can change rooms at the rear and are located close to specific treatment areas.
Example of classification of specialties using the generic spaces and principles

We also looked at which specialisms could be present in the clinic at the same time. This allowed us to create basic principles to test the architect's sketch design and allowed us to design a new spot plan.

Spot plans

Spot plans are a schematic representation of the floor plan. They allow different layouts to be tested with the users. With the help of the floor plan, this project was able to test whether patient-friendly and efficient work could be done on all parts of the day.

A future-proof layout

Together, we agreed on a floor plan with short walking distances for healthcare providers and patients. The rooms are grouped so that every specialism can work comfortably and flexibly. And efficient use is made of the available square metres.

This, together with the established principles, formed the briefing for the architect's design. Involving employees in the design process also created support for the new policy concept.

Do you want to work together on tomorrow's care?
Get in touch with Thamar Verhaar