Healthy Choices

Top hospital designers pick new and innovative products.

Creating products for the health-care market is a tricky business. Like the buildings and spaces they serve, these products are subject to an arduous set of functional requirements. Frivolity is verboten, and style is secondary, though never entirely ignored. Durability matters: These products serve real and often urgent needs and must stay relevant over long periods of time. It’s quite a challenging checklist. We asked five leading health-care designers to pick an innovative new product that performs at the most rigorous levels required for hospitals. Their choices appear below.

1. IOA BREEZE CHAIR
Jocelyn Stroupe, Cannon Design
The Breeze chair uses knit elastomeric material stretched across a steel frame—eliminating static electricity, minimizing bulk, and providing the user with the feeling of being suspended. “Seating of this type tends to be overly large and presents a challenge to fit into the space—in scale and size as well as the visual qualities,” Stroupe says.

2. SEDIA JUMPSEAT WALL
Anne Barthelemy, CAMA, Inc.
Originally developed by Ziba Design for its Portland, Oregon auditorium to provide folding seating with a minimal footprint, the jumpseat has now been joined by the JumpSeat Wall. The Wall’s further-reduced folded profile pro- vides a temporary perch in hospital corridors or in other health-care applications where space is at a premium.

3. FUTRUS HEADWALL SYSTEM 
Diane Lindberg-Nigh, NBBJ
Designed to be easy to disinfect (to control the spread of hospital-acquired infections), the headwall system is also highly modular and discreet. Finished in durable, sanitary Corian, the design incorporated work-flow studies to maximize user efficiency; when not in use it presents only clean, minimal fascia panels.

4. DIRTT WALLS 
John Rodenbeck AIA, LEED AP, Perkins Eastman
The modular wall fixtures combine antimicrobial finishes with the flexibility to present consistent access to vital tools and supplies regardless of room layout, making for a good fit in health-care applications. Patient comfort is also considered, with docking stations for personal electronics and USB connectivity built in.

All images courtesy the manufacturers

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