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San Diego Medical Center building

Designing a Patient-Centric Hospital

Using human-centered design to integrate technology and help improve the patient experience.

The San Diego Medical Center, opened in 2017, is a state-of-the-art facility designed to help enhance patient care through the intentional use of technology. Garfield Innovation Center was used to create full-scale mock-ups to evaluate the proposed design and technology integrations.

These prototypes allowed architects, technologists, clinicians, and members to simulate care scenarios and refine specific design elements over the course of several months. The resulting design helps to improve efficiency, communication, and the patient experience at a lower cost.

Some of the notable design features include:

  • A railing which runs continuously from the patient bed through the door into the bathroom to prevent falls.
  • Patients can control the lights, blinds, and temperature from their bed, empowering them to adjust their environment to promote healing.
  • Private patient rooms with a generous family area for overnight stays.
  • Multiple systems were integrated into a single large flat panel display for entertainment, educational content, personalized information, and telehealth. Patients can order meals from the on-screen menu.
  • Patient rooms include in-room, two-way video for specialty consultations and remote visits.
  • Clinicians utilize smart phones that integrate patient information, clinical alerts, voice, and text communication. Patients can see the name and photo of clinicians on-screen before they enter the room.
  • A role-based, real-time clinical directory makes it easy to contact the charge nurse on duty without having to know their name or look them up.
  • Design with a commitment to sustainability and green technologies.

The user testing was a fascinating experience. We were able to reach out to members and get their honest feedback. We brought in members from all demographics, including seniors, adults, children, different nationalities and technology ability levels.
Ray Otsuka, NFS Technology Product Manager

The San Diego Medical Center was the fourth healthcare facility worldwide to achieve LEED Platinum status

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