Healthcare Design - October 2015 - 33


INSPIRED DESIGN

shelter for families elsewhere to reserve space for patients
and caregivers: "It starts with having fewer people here.
We try to reduce census so we can focus on [patient
care] and housing required staff, and to reduce energy
consumption."
The UMC and VA projects also accounted for full
HVAC operations during power outages, something Failla
says isn't just about comfort. As hurricanes strike in late
summer, days without power can send unventilated parts
of buildings into triple-digit temperatures. "Heat starts
going up, machines start shutting down, and you can
have serious problems. It can get so hot, it's also a health
issue," she says.

U.S. DEPARTMENT OF VETERANS AFFAIRS

From plan to action
Even the most secure facilities aren't effective without a
solid emergency plan. Rivera says the VA has multiple
levels of procedures to guide storm preparation and
response. Most are based off of hurricane designations
set by the National Weather Service National Hurricane
Center, and threat levels help dictate operations, staffing
levels, and closures at the facility. "The bricks and mortar are a part of it, but you need to be able to activate

Above: Architects and
designers planned the
Southeast Louisiana Veterans
Health Care System's new
campus with a park-like
feel to create a welcoming
environment for veterans and
visitors. Below: The
1.6 million-square-foot VA
medical center sits on a
30-acre site and is being
constructed with all missioncritical equipment and
departments 20 feet above
grade.

Fernando Rivera, director of the Southeast
Louisiana Veterans Health Care System, says the
VA medical center replacement, Project Legacy,
was designed at a time when the system was
changing its patient care model to be in line with
a nationwide trend to reduce noncritical hospital
stays by bringing more patient care to homes and
clinics.
Reducing that load allowed the New Orleans
project to focus more on creating a comfortable
space designed for short-term stays. Because
many patients and families have to travel from up
to five hours away, the facility has larger rooms
to accommodate family members. Amenities
and family-friendly features include large oak
trees around the campus, 11 gardens, temporary
housing facilities, abundant seating, and beverage
and snack stations near all entrances.
One unique element at the VA hospital is
the rehabilitation center. When contractors
demolished multiple city blocks to clear the city,
they salvaged four historic homes, relocated
them to the grounds, and converted them into
transitional living residences. One is set up like
a typical home to help veterans learn to manage
day-to-day tasks. Another was set up with
physical rehabilitation equipment, and two others
will be used for outpatient mental health. Liz
Failla, project engineer for the U.S. Department
of Veterans Affairs, says the homes also serve
as a buffer between the new medical complex
and neighborhood. "They have historic value, but
being able to use them for patients really brings
a more comfortable, homelike environment," she
says.
Rivera says the new hospital was designed
with significant input from its specific population
of patients. Everything from the placement of
bathrooms and snack areas to signage and layout
of the rooms was designed to appeal to veterans.
Because some have issues with hypersensitivity,
designers also reduced blind angles, increased the
seat spacing, and made signage more prominent
and visible.
The hospital was also designed with input from
staff to improve their work efficiency and safety.
Failla says every inpatient med/surg room features
ceiling lifts that go from the bed to the bathroom.
All rooms are also same-handed to improve
response time; nurses' stations have been
strategically placed with buffers between patient
rooms to minimize noise.

HCDmagazine.com 10.15

33


http://www.HCDmagazine.com

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Healthcare Design - October 2015

Healthcare Design - October 2015
Contents
hcdmagazine.com
Editorial
Show Talk
Monitor
Interiors
The Center
Adapt and Overcome
Seeds of Change
Site Seeing
State of Mind
Research
Special Advertising Section: 2015 Landscape Design Portfolio
First Look
Healthcare Design - October 2015 - Healthcare Design - October 2015
Healthcare Design - October 2015 - Cover2
Healthcare Design - October 2015 - 1
Healthcare Design - October 2015 - Contents
Healthcare Design - October 2015 - 3
Healthcare Design - October 2015 - hcdmagazine.com
Healthcare Design - October 2015 - 5
Healthcare Design - October 2015 - Editorial
Healthcare Design - October 2015 - 7
Healthcare Design - October 2015 - Show Talk
Healthcare Design - October 2015 - 9
Healthcare Design - October 2015 - Monitor
Healthcare Design - October 2015 - 11
Healthcare Design - October 2015 - 12
Healthcare Design - October 2015 - 13
Healthcare Design - October 2015 - 14
Healthcare Design - October 2015 - 15
Healthcare Design - October 2015 - 16
Healthcare Design - October 2015 - 17
Healthcare Design - October 2015 - 18
Healthcare Design - October 2015 - 19
Healthcare Design - October 2015 - Interiors
Healthcare Design - October 2015 - 21
Healthcare Design - October 2015 - 22
Healthcare Design - October 2015 - 23
Healthcare Design - October 2015 - 24
Healthcare Design - October 2015 - 25
Healthcare Design - October 2015 - The Center
Healthcare Design - October 2015 - 27
Healthcare Design - October 2015 - Adapt and Overcome
Healthcare Design - October 2015 - 29
Healthcare Design - October 2015 - 30
Healthcare Design - October 2015 - 31
Healthcare Design - October 2015 - 32
Healthcare Design - October 2015 - 33
Healthcare Design - October 2015 - 34
Healthcare Design - October 2015 - 35
Healthcare Design - October 2015 - Seeds of Change
Healthcare Design - October 2015 - 37
Healthcare Design - October 2015 - 38
Healthcare Design - October 2015 - 39
Healthcare Design - October 2015 - 40
Healthcare Design - October 2015 - 41
Healthcare Design - October 2015 - Site Seeing
Healthcare Design - October 2015 - 43
Healthcare Design - October 2015 - State of Mind
Healthcare Design - October 2015 - 45
Healthcare Design - October 2015 - 46
Healthcare Design - October 2015 - 47
Healthcare Design - October 2015 - 48
Healthcare Design - October 2015 - 49
Healthcare Design - October 2015 - 50
Healthcare Design - October 2015 - 51
Healthcare Design - October 2015 - 52
Healthcare Design - October 2015 - 53
Healthcare Design - October 2015 - Research
Healthcare Design - October 2015 - 55
Healthcare Design - October 2015 - 56
Healthcare Design - October 2015 - 57
Healthcare Design - October 2015 - Special Advertising Section: 2015 Landscape Design Portfolio
Healthcare Design - October 2015 - 59
Healthcare Design - October 2015 - 60
Healthcare Design - October 2015 - 61
Healthcare Design - October 2015 - 62
Healthcare Design - October 2015 - 63
Healthcare Design - October 2015 - First Look
Healthcare Design - October 2015 - Cover3
Healthcare Design - October 2015 - Cover4
Healthcare Design - October 2015 - SCover1
Healthcare Design - October 2015 - S1
Healthcare Design - October 2015 - S2
Healthcare Design - October 2015 - S3
Healthcare Design - October 2015 - S4
Healthcare Design - October 2015 - S5
Healthcare Design - October 2015 - S6
Healthcare Design - October 2015 - S7
Healthcare Design - October 2015 - S8
Healthcare Design - October 2015 - S9
Healthcare Design - October 2015 - SCover3
Healthcare Design - October 2015 - SCover4
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