Healthcare Design Quality Assessment Method


What is it?
A triangulated study technique initially designed for the analysis of design quality in healthcare buildings but now being developed for use in all areas of the built environment. Emphasis is on creating a better understanding of healthcare provision as related to socio-cultural context.

Useful where?
In any healthcare environment which can include almost any building type or urban space.

What else does it do?
Emphasises qualities as much as measures, paying special attention to contexts and outcomes.

Related activities
International comparisons are achievable.

In what sectors?
Primary experience is in the evaluation of healthcare buildings, but more recently is under adaptation for use in all sectors including urban design and public space.

Development status

Who developed it?
Kaethe Burt O'Dea in a project for the European Health Property Network.

Stage of development
Entered a second phase of development in 2006 for use in a study of radiotherapy environments for the UK Department of Health. Added a feed forward dimension in a study to support the design development of a new Neonatal intensive Care Unit in 2009 for Feilden Clegg Bradley Studios, UK.

The process is under constant adaptation to service the new demand for community based health care systems. More resent applications focus on urban design to feed into the necessary shift toward preventative models of care and the role of individual and their 'street' as the primary healthcare environment.

Examples of its use
Case studies of buildings in Finland, The Netherlands, Norway, Northern Ireland and Ireland.

Further development happening?

Development contacts
Kaethe Burt-O'Dea

This technique benchmarks buildings, the ambition of the brief and how the building nurtures the system it is designed to service. The benchmarks are project specific.

How it works

Brief description
On site case study with walk-through, questionnaires, structured interviews, diaries, overnight stay in the building are some potential modules of the study, but characteristics of the study are project specific. Each study undertaken responds to the needs of the brief to define the appropriate methodology and determine which techniques to use. This approach is necessary in order to uncover and explain the relationship between care model, context and built response, and how this impacts on design quality.

Is there software?

How long does it take?
Three days, or more, on site depending on the size and population of the building and ambition of the study.

Can I do it myself?

Can someone else do it for me?

Supporting information
Eu-HPN Study published as report. See references

Burt-O'Dea K., The European Property Network Design Impact Study, P&P, 2005

Is the technique in the public domain?
Brief outline in the report (see references)

Are the methods open to inspection with technical support papers?
Methods on application to Kaethe Burt-O'Dea.

On application.

Are the results in the public domain?

Are there stable benchmarks?

Is there an accreditation system?

Organisations offering
Kaethe Burt-O'Dea,
Contact name: Kaethe Burt-O'Dea.