Royal Adelaide Hospital featured in Indesign magazine

The article draws on biophilia and technology for the benefit of healthcare and wellbeing.

Health + Aged Care | Media | Projects | Sydney

2 July 2019

Royal Adelaide Hospital (RAH) featured in the November 2018 issue of Indesign, focussing on healthcare and wellbeing. Designed by our Sydney office with STH Health Architecture (STH), RAH is designed for efficiency and wellbeing, improving the healthcare experience and achieving better patient outcomes.

Indesign Special Edition Editor Tracey Ingram explored the ways in which designers are promoting and supporting wellbeing in healthcare, aged care, fitness and personal wellness environments. Tracey’s story ‘Human vs. Nature’ discussed the ways in which DesignInc and Design Group Italia (DGI) are drawing on biophilia and technology for the benefit of healthcare and wellbeing.

‘To create the most soothing wellness and healthcare experiences, designers are delving into biophilia: access to and imitation of nature, which is purported to reduce stress and aid recuperation. But as technology becomes an increasingly important factor in today’s spaces, how can these two seemingly opposite forces – one physically natural, the other synthetically digital – find harmony?’ Tracey wrote. She spoke with DesignInc Director Richard Does about RAH and to DGI Chief Creative Officer Sigurdur Thorsteinsson about The Retreat Hotel in Iceland.

‘Biophilic design is important for achieving patient wellbeing. A healthy environment assists in a faster recovery,’ Richard told Tracey. He believes the need for biophilic design will only increase as cities become denser and that it’s important for architecture to bring the landscape into building interiors, as it does at RAH. ‘RAH is conceptualised as a park within a hospital. This theme of nature permeates every aspect of design throughout the hospital and its landscape, be it material, pattern, image or form,’ Richard said.

The architecture of RAH prioritises views, fresh air, privacy and efficiency, which are proven to contribute to faster healing. Patient bedrooms are designed to create healing environments; connections to landscaped courtyards contribute to healthy minds and bodies; and the layout is configured to optimise patient journey times and treatment. RAH also incorporates state-of-the-art technology, some of which is conspicuous, and some is invisible to the public eye.

The feature in the healthcare and wellbeing issue of Indesign magazine is fitting for DesignInc given our commitment to supporting team members’ wellbeing, inside and outside of the office. In March 2018, our Sydney office launched the DesignInc Sydney Health, Wellbeing and Lifestyle Program, which recognises there are multiple factors that contribute to an individual’s wellbeing at work. The program promotes physical activity, healthy eating, balanced lifestyle, financial security and professional development and our teams’ response has been exceptionally positive as they benefit from healthy snacking, yoga classes and flexible working arrangements.