Thoughtful design is very important for neurodiverse patients. Creating an environment that is welcoming and calming can reduce stress and help patients feel safe. Design features such as comfortable seating, good lighting, and soundproofing can help reduce distractions and provide a more peaceful atmosphere. Thoughtful design can also help staff better understand and care for neurodiverse patients, which can lead to improved outcomes and better patient experiences.
Defining the Characteristics of Neurodiverse Patients
Neurodiverse patients are those with neurological or neurodevelopmental disorders, such as autism, ADHD, dyslexia, or Tourette syndrome. These patients require specialized care to address their unique needs and to ensure that their treatment is successful. Healthcare providers can experience better outcomes if they are aware of and cater to the unique needs of neurodiverse patients.
Appropriate Care for Neurodiverse Patients
Healthcare designers can accommodate neurodiverse patients by creating a patient-friendly environment that is welcoming and calming for those with neurological or neurodevelopmental disorders. This may include providing comfortable seating, good lighting, and soundproofing measures to reduce distractions. Additionally, healthcare designers can provide spaces for patient support groups and resources to help patients better understand their diagnosis and treatment options. Healthcare designers can also ensure that staff have the appropriate training to provide care for neurodiverse patients.
For more on this topic, read “Seattle Children’s Focuses On Neurodiverse Patient Needs At New Clinic,” which ran in Healthcare Design’s April 2023 issue
Marie Wikoff is the creator of Wikoff Design Studio based out of Reno, Nevada. Her expertise in healthcare design has helped modernize healthcare organizations locally, regionally, and internationally, improving patient experience and outcomes. Her credentials include Evidence-Based Design Accreditation and Certification (EDAC), American Academy of Healthcare Interior Designer (CHID), the National Council of Interior Design Qualification (NCIDQ) and LEED AP. Contact Marie Wikoff
Photo Credit and Caption
David Wakely Photography – For Stanford Children’s Health Specialty Services Center in Sunnyvale, Calif., HOK designed waiting spaces with a variety of seating options, including enclosed nooks, to meet different needs. (Source)