A clean, comfortable waiting room says a lot about a medical practice. Whether you are an orthodontist, primary care physician, dentist, or other kind of specialist, designing a healthy waiting room space is critical. Since the waiting room is often the first impression a patient gets from your practice, it is very important to ensure that the experience is a good one. Here are a few great ways to develop healthy and inviting waiting room solutions for your patients.
The Power of Color and Cleanliness
Utilizing soothing colors such as blue, green, violet, or a palette of neutral tones is a subtle way to help patients feel at ease. We are all affected in various ways by different color arrangements, but studies have shown that colors such as green and blue, especially, help impart health and tranquility. Color can be introduced to waiting rooms in a variety of ways such as painting the walls, introducing natural plants, or putting up art.
Another given aspect of waiting room solutions is cleanliness. Make sure your waiting room is equipped with the proper cleaning supplies. Employees or maintenance workers should also be instructed on the optimal practices for keeping your waiting room disinfected and sanitized as much as possible. Keep in mind that some harsh cleaning products can be irritating or cause respiratory problems. It is important to choose the right cleaning products for your space that won’t trouble your patients.
Modern Furniture and Fixtures
Arrange modern, comfortable furniture, side tables, and fixtures to give patients an enjoyable waiting experience. Wait times are usually an unavoidable side effect of any medical practice, but imparting a sense of comfort through simple, clean chairs can do a lot in the way of truly allowing patients a sense of calm. Another great idea is to place calming art pieces on the walls such as flowers or nature scenery that reflect local interests.
Healing Ambiance and Healthy Distractions
It is a wonderful idea to add to any waiting room’s vibe by adding in some healing ambiance. This may include a soothing fountain or low ambient sounds such as waves, light rain, soft and natural lighting, air purifying plants, and soothing music. Soothing sounds and sights can help calm any anxiety and stress patients may be experiencing as they wait for their appointment.
Some healthy distractions to take their mind off things can also do wonders for mood. A few great ideas for healthy distractions include current magazines and books. If your practice treats children, then it may also be a good idea to include some coloring books, crayons, and children’s books for varying ages.
The Effect of Healthy Waiting Rooms
One of the most important aspects to any successful medical practice is trust. When patients feel like they are in trustworthy hands, it improves their overall experience. Designing spaces within your practice, especially healthy waiting rooms, raises the likelihood of successful treatment(s) and a more pleasant experience for all. When patients feel you are empathic and have their best interest at heart, it increases the chance of said patients returning to your practice for all of their future needs. Although there are many aspects to creating and running a successful practice, healthy waiting room solutions are an important first step.
To get started with your medical practice expansion, construction, and design, contact Boulevard LA today.
About Boulevard Medical Properties: Boulevard Medical Properties wants to help make your move into a new location as simple and painless as possible. No matter what your medical specialty is, Boulevard Medical Properties can assist with lease negotiation, finding the ideal space, and delegating design and construction for your practice.
Besides providing the best quality care at your medical practice, your office and staff should strive to make all patients feel as comfortable as possible. If your patients are usually parents who have to bring their children with them to an appointment or your office is in a pediatric field, then you must make your office kid-friendly. By welcoming children into your practice, you can help your patients feel more at ease and even begin to build lifelong relationships with them.
Making your office child-friendly doesn’t have to be difficult or time consuming. Here are our best kid friendly office ideas for creating a welcoming environment for children at your medical office.
You should dedicate one area of your waiting room for the kids. You can mark the section by placing down a kid-friendly carpet, a rubberized mat or something else sturdy and easy to clean. You can also decorate a wall in that area with fun cartoon characters and bright colors. Make sure to fill the area with small, child size furniture to make them feel comfortable. You should also fill the area with children’s books and toys. To make this play area, you don’t have to spend too much money if you get these items from second-hand stores or Craigslist. Having a play area will go a long way in making your child patients, and their parents, happy and relaxed in your office.
No White Coats
It’s no secret that children are nervous and possibly scared when they see a doctor. You can help them feel more at ease by losing the white lab coat, which will immediately make a child nervous around you. You can replace it with a coat that has a fun design, or just forego it completely. If you can help change a child patient’s perception of a doctor, then your patients will be more at ease.
Kid-Themed Medical Equipment
There are medical equipment companies out there that make affordable instruments with kids in mind. These tools usually come in fun colors or designs and are smaller in size to help fit children. You can find fun stethoscopes in kid-friendly designs and sizes, masks shaped liked animal noses, phlebotomy chairs shaped like racing cars and more. These will help your children patients relax in your office, and even make them laugh.
Kid Specific Exam Rooms
If some of your patients are children, it may be a good idea to dedicate at least one or two exam rooms to them. You can incorporate bright, fun colors in the design of the room, as white and beige colors can seem intimidating. Instead of adult magazines, include children’s books and magazines. Make sure to include other elements that will put them at ease, like a toy or two.
Remember the Rewards
On their way out of the office, it’s a good idea to reward children for being good patients – or for patiently waiting for their parent’s exam to be over. You can have a bowl or drawer full of stickers, candy, and small toys for them to choose from. They will love having the option to pick something for themselves. The kids will appreciate it, and their parents will even more.
Whether it’s coming up with the perfect kid friend office ideas or something a little more mature, design the perfect, custom office with Boulevard LA. We specialize creating in unique, state-of-the-art medical and dental office space in Downtown Los Angeles. Clients like Quest Diagnostics, USC Fertility and Perinatal and nonprofit community clinics have all enjoyed our services. We will provide a custom space for your office we understand that every practice is unique.
While you may be tempted to forgo putting in more than the bare minimum in designing the best waiting room experience, know that you are doing your medical practice a huge disservice. Rather than just throwing a few chairs and magazines together, you should take time to design your waiting room space with your patients in mind.
Research has shown that potential patients make a judgement about your practice within 5 seconds of walking through the door. It’s really important to make a good first impression, so that your patients will want to come back to your office.
With this in mind, here is a checklist with all the essentials you will need for creating the best waiting room experience.
Start with the basics here: pick out some seating and arrange it. Think about how many seats you will need and how many will fit in the space. Are there going to be families or groups coming in where a few people will need to wait at one time? Do your patients need a good amount of space between them and the people around them? You might want to consider arranging the seating so that people have enough personal space, and not clustering it like you would in a living room. If healthy and sick patients have to sit together, the last thing they need is to be crowded together. Also, remember that people come in all sizes, so your furniture should too. Overall, out yourself in your patients’ shoes when designing the seating arrangements.
Another basic that should be high up on the list is lighting. Take advantage of natural sunlight wherever you can, as it will help calm your patients as they wait to be seen. Try to avoid fluorescent lighting as the flicker in these lights can set off nervous system distress in people who are on the autism spectrum, people who have a seizure disorder and people with a traumatic brain injury. Consider adding lamps with incandescent bulbs as they are the least stimulating to the nervous system.
When designing your waiting room space, you can use color to help create a relaxing environment for patients and help tie your design together. Designers recommend light purple, quiet greens and other soothing colors. If you feel the need for something brighter, consider adding in a few accent design elements in a fun color.
Just like with color, you can use décor elements to help create a calming environment for patients. For example, you can add pictures of landscapes and seascapes to your walls to evoke the calming effect of nature. You can also add some plants to bring about a similar effect.
It is no secret that some people may be nervous when waiting to be seen by a doctor, so add some things to do to distract them. At the very least, you can help prevent boredom. Adding a variety of magazines about different interests is a good idea. However, make sure that they are current – who wants to read a tattered magazine from three years ago? You can also add things like stress balls, mini puzzles, coffee-table books and other types of stress relieving toys and activities.
If your patients usually bring their children along, or your office is a pediatric practice, make a corner just for the kids. Add some toys, puzzles, picture book and more to keep them entertained while they wait.
Last but certainly not least, make sure to keep your waiting room clean and tidy. You want to portray a professional and hygienic image to your patients, so cleaning up on a daily basis is a must.
Having worked with clients including Quest Diagnostics, USC Fertility and Perinatal and nonprofit community clinics, Boulevard LA specializes in individually-suited, state-of-the-art medical and dental office space in Downtown Los Angeles. We realize that each practice is unique to one another and each deserves their own custom space. For more information about premium office spaces and tips for the best waiting room experience, contact us!
In order to create a good experience for your patients and to elevate your practice above others, make sure your office is laid out with one goal in mind: efficiency. By optimizing your best office layout, you can create a great experience for your patients, strengthening your relationships with them and encouraging communication. You will also create a space designed for workflow efficiency, patient safety and improved patient and team interactions.
There are 5 steps to perfecting your best office layout for efficiency:
1. Team Stations
To improve efficiency and strengthen camaraderie between your employees, implement team stations or pods. You can place these pods or stations close to patient exam rooms so that the space that must be traveled between tasks is shorter. This also leads to more visibility to the exam rooms, which is also a plus for your staff.
You will also create opportunities for employees to naturally interact multiple times a day. Besides leading to a stronger bond between team members, these interactions might also lead to better patient outcomes and lower health care costs.
If you do not already have a central workspace or do not have a money for a big remodel, you might consider converting a centrally located exam room into a team space.
2. Encourage Engagement from Patients
You want to encourage productive interactions and eye contact from patients, making sure they feel comfortable to fully communicate with you. The shapes, types and arrangement of furniture can all help with this goal. Instead of spending the whole visit on the examination table (which is uncomfortable for patients), consider adding a few chairs to the exam room to help foster conversation. You should also add computers on a swivel arm to each room or give your team laptops to being with them to each exam, so that they may feel free to shift their position to face patients when speaking with them.
The best desk shapes for encouraging patient communication are moderately sized circular or semi-circular desktops. This allows for the both the patient and the doctor to share access to the computer while still being able to face each other for conversation.
3. Alleviate Patient Anxiety with Pleasant Distractions
It’s safe to say that most patients feel uneasy at the doctor’s office. And when they walk into your practice, they pick up on their surroundings that give them clues as to the quality of care you will provide them. Make sure your practice sends the right first impression by setting up your waiting room with calming elements. Add artwork featuring images of nature in direct view, provide a selection of magazines about an array of popular subjects and install a flat screen set to a patient-education loop.
4. Make Rooms Feel More Spacious
The last thing your patients need is to feel claustrophobic, so make sure your office gives off a feeling of spaciousness. Add soft lighting to exam rooms, rearrange the furniture for optimal space and make exam rooms feel more open by placing desks, exam tables and chairs in the best position. Also, make sure your office does not have a lot of clutter, which can make even big spaces feel small.
5. Use Technology to Connect with Patients
Instead of burying your face in your computer screen while meeting with patients, increase your eye contact with them and share the computer screen. Using laptops, tablets and large monitors can help you and your team achieve this goal. By maintaining eye contact, you will help your patients feel at ease and encourage open communication.
Boulevard LA specializes in custom, state-of-the-art medical and dental office space in Downtown Los Angeles. We have worked with clients like Quest Diagnostics, USC Fertility and Perinatal and nonprofit community clinics. Because we understand that every practice is unique, we can provide a custom space for your best office layout.
Warmer weather and longer days mean that summertime is officially here. While no one wants to be stuck at their cubicle on a beautiful summer day, there are ways to bring the summer-feel to your office. Consider these Summer office decorations and themes to help you cope with being stuck at your desk on a bright, sunny day.
General Design Tips
First, here are some general design tips to follow so that your decorations will be aesthetically pleasing and functional for the office:
• Colors and color schemes can be used to create the ideal office space. Although it may seem simple, colors can brighten up your corporate space. Your color scheme will depend on what type of office or medical practice you have, so choose a theme accordingly. Picking a color scheme should be one of the first things you do when decorating your office.
• Photos can help make your office feel more comfortable. Hang up photos of employees and encourage them to decorate their space with pictures of their family and friends.
• Choose decorations and art pieces wisely. These decorations and art pieces are a great opportunity to represent yourself and your attitudes, so choose them carefully. For example, neutral colors can convey a more conservative personality, while bright colors can suggest a creative personality. Whichever decorations you choose will set the tone for your office.
• Remember to keep things clean. Keep a handle on the clutter and trash around your office. Put away things that you do not use very often, and make sure to utilize storage space.
Summer office decorations will incorporate these tips, plus a few specific suggestions:
First, you want to think of a summery color scheme to decorate your office that will go along with your theme. Maybe you want to go for a beach look, so you will want to choose light blues, white, sand colors and even shades of yellow. Thinking of a color scheme first will help you tie together your decorations for a cohesive look.
Once you have your color scheme picked out, think about any fun decorations or art pieces to go with your theme. Party supply stores and discount retail stores, like T.J. Maxx, will have lots of different options.
For art pieces, make sure they are appropriate for your work-space and will help maintain a professional tone. Displaying art can be a great way to show your personality. You can even ask local artists if they would want to display their art in your office.
Plants can help your office feel more natural and homey, and certain ones can bring the summer vibes to your corporate space. They add a unique splash of color to your space and can even add a fresh fragrance. When choosing a plant, make sure that you will have enough space to store the plant, make sure the office has the right lighting and temperature, ensure that the color and size will go with other office decorations and don’t for get to water the plant.
For a summer feel, consider adding succulents and mini cacti. The benefit of these plants, besides looking unique and one-of-a-kind, is that they require way less maintenance than other plants. In other words, they are hard to kill if you lack a green thumb.
Boulevard LA specializes in custom, state-of-the-art medical and dental office space in Downtown Los Angeles. We have worked with clients like Quest Diagnostics, USC Fertility and Perinatal, and nonprofit community clinics. Because we understand that every practice is unique, we can provide a custom space for your office.
Moving or expanding your office can be a huge undertaking, and working out the logistics can be overwhelming. If the process seems stressful, there are alternatives to doing it by yourself. Need help with your new office move in checklist?
Boulevard LA is here to help. We have a custom office move in checklist and process that can take the stress and annoyance out of setting up your new office space. From finding the perfect space for your medical or dental practice to putting in place the last decoration, Boulevard LA can perform the whole process from start to finish for you.
The process in broken down into three parts:
1. Designing the perfect office
3. Building your new space
To design your office, we will work with a preferred building contractor and an architect. We will come up with the ultimate plan to maximize the space and make it visually appealing and practical while taking your patients’ and staff’s specific needs into consideration and set your office up for success. Any necessary city permitting or construction that comes up during the big move will be taken care of.
Next, we will work with you to plan an office space customized to your taste. Interior designers will help you select paint colors, cabinets, flooring and more for your new office. Our network of preferred interior designers is a wealth of knowledge, having years of experience designing medical and dental offices in Los Angeles. Their goal is to design your space so that it makes a great first impression for your patients.
The third step in this process is actually building your new space. Once the plans have been finalized and the decorations picked out, the construction can start. Their contractors have years of experience building medical and dental offices, so they are knowledgeable about the complexity of moving and placing medical equipment. They will give you updates about the process, taking the stress and worry out of moving.
While Boulevard LA will take care of most aspects of your move, add these tips to your new office move in checklist:
• Start planning the move as soon as possible. They are generally planned months in advance, with larger moves planned even earlier. You might even have to move during non-work hours outside of the 9-5 Monday-Friday schedule.
• Get to know the new building or space before moving in. Check to see if there are any specific requirements for the new building, like flooring requirements. Walk through the pace with the building manager to make sure the space is ready for move-in – i.e. no leaks, broken bulbs, etc.
• Keep your employees informed at every stage of the move and let them know about it as soon as you can. Give them some time before moving day to pack up their things and take personal items with them.
• Create announcements about the move. You can announce it on your website and social media, create new business cards and flyers and let your patients know when you talk to them.
• On the actual moving day, have 2 managers present during the entire move. One should be at the old office and the other at the new place.
• Make sure to clean the clutter from your current office when you move. Extra clutter will take up valuable space and time to move.
• Create a checklist so that you remember to do certain tasks. You can create different checklists for planning your move, move-in day and for your employees.
• Communication is one of the most important parts of a move. Communicate frequently with your movers, your staff, your patients and anyone else involved. Boulevard LA specializes in custom, state-of-the-art medical and dental office space in Downtown Los Angeles. They have worked with clients like Quest Diagnostics, USC Fertility and Perinatal and nonprofit community clinics. Because they understand that every practice is unique, they can provide a custom space for your office. If you have questions about your new office move in checklist contact us today!
Nothing adds clutter more than wires between laptops and docking stations. Eliminating wires increases open space and organization within the workplace, especially in a room full of open desks. Manufacturers have developed solutions that are clean and simple to address this new trend.
Bringing the Outdoors In
Nature is having a serious moment in design. Reclaimed wood panel installations, exposed concrete flooring and incorporating natural floral patterns in fabrics and artwork are all becoming more prominent, along with plant life in the form of living walls. Mother Nature is strategically and deeply integrated with salvaged wood, water features, outdoor office extensions to demonstrate real, measurable benefits for human performance metrics such as productivity, emotional well-being, stress reduction, and learning. It’s the natural, healing properties that a lot of these finishes and details have that will continue to make this trend increasingly popular throughout the year.
Multipurpose spaces can be utilized for everything from multimedia presentations to casual break areas and are among the most effective office layout ideas. We will also see more oval-shaped office desks, which allow for a more convenient place for 4-6 people to meet, as well as a shift toward height adjustable tables for standing meetings or workstations.
Designated Lounge Areas
A move toward creating spaces that are the antithesis of rigid workstations are on the rise for office design trends in 2017. Lighter, powerful, wireless technology has inspired more comfort and relaxed collaboration. Offices now mandate the inclusion of dedicated lounge areas to make working more enjoyable.
Offices Organized by Color
Work environment with color helps boost your thoughts along with being more organized and colorful. Color promotes happiness, productivity, and creativity. Offices are integrating pops of color in unexpected ways and therefore striving to be at the forefront of offering a wide color spectrum of accessories and furniture.
People are looking for more interaction at work — lending a trend towards community tables. For centuries, the community table has been a meaningful symbol of kinship or alliance that is now becoming an important part of the work environment. It fosters and exhibits many of the characteristics of a domicile, more relaxed, more congenial and collaborative work place.
A Mix of Different Textures
An increased emphasis on using varied materials throughout the workplace to create environments that influence wellness and productivity is on the rise. Products with a rich material bring original and bold aesthetics with contrasting color and textures to create a more varied, inspiring and personalized work environment.
Mobility that lets workers drop in at the office as they please and mobility that lets workers move easily within the office itself are gaining importance in corporate design.
New Seating Options
Company meetings are ever-changing and challenging dynamics with new seating options. Imagine how different the conversations would go in a company meeting with one area of round, low seating. The challenge is to create a fresh and alive space at every turn while offering sanctuaries and think spaces away from one’s desk. More than ever, offices must inspire and invite employees to do their best by offering furniture that meets different work modes. You can look at the use of a large sofa or a smaller hobbit hole space such as enclaves with padded benches for lunch or telecommuters.
Schedule a Consultation
Considering space for your medical practice can be challenging with multiple factors influencing your day-to-day operations. Whether you are starting from scratch or in the early stages of planning your move, Boulevard LA has the expertise and knowledge to help guide you.
Physician appointments are commonly associated with discomfort and pain. Patients don’t like going to physicians in loom of discomforting news. To keep the fear at bay, physicians across practices have invested time in designing the heart of their medical practice: the waiting room.
The waiting room is the opening statement to a medical office. Patients often form their first impression of a medical practice in the waiting room or reception area. Stained furniture, old torn magazines, or a rude front-office receptionist can wreak havoc on how patients perceive the quality of their care.
The messages conveyed by a waiting can be subtle or direct. Everything from the arrangement of seating to the type and intensity of color and light has an impact on a patient’s mood and well-being. These simple office waiting room ideas can drastically improve the mood of your entire business.
Choose Colors and Tones Carefully
Because one of your main goals is to relieve patients’ feelings of tension or fear, lean towards colors that soothe, rather than those that excite. Create the ambiance of the space using color tones and contrasting textures. This could be in the furniture you choose as well as the colors of your walls and fixtures. If you are designing the waiting room, you may want to consider calming and soothing colors such as green or blue with a touch of pink for compassion. Blue illustrates honesty, loyalty and security while green is calming and soothing. Refrain from using yellow and red as they may cause anxiety and aggression.
Set the Mood with Lighting
Just as the décor sets the ambiance, so does the lighting. Adjusting the lighting in your waiting room can promote a relaxed mood. Soft, bright lights create a calming sensation that appeals to the patients. Low, warm light, on the other hand, creates a “homey” environment. Artificial lighting (i.e. fluorescent bulbs), however, can come off as harsh. Natural lighting can visually create a larger space. Out of all the office waiting room ideas for improvement, lighting is the most effective.
Pay Attention to Traffic Flow
Your waiting room space and design is the forefront of your medical office or clinic. To design a welcoming space, consider where your guests will be entering and exiting from, and make sure these areas coincide with the waiting room. Make sure décor and furniture design layout corresponds with the traffic flow. There is nothing worse than showing up for an appointment and having no idea where to go. The design of your waiting room should make sure the foot traffic flow is clearly marked.
Choose the Right Furniture
The most important part of your waiting room décor is the furniture. Not only is it the first thing your guests will see, it determines how comfortable they will feel in your space. Consider the styles, colors and fabric choices that will help support a branded look.
Measurements are key in selecting the furniture (including seating). Design your space to look professional and attractive while comfortably accommodating your visitors. To decide how much furniture, you will need, consider how many waiting room chairs would be used by your guests on the busiest day. Then select your waiting room chairs based on comfort, style and practicality. Once this is done, fill the space with tables — keeping in mind the traffic flow.
Finish with a Touch of Décor
Once you have decided on your furniture and colors, you will want to pick out some décor items that will help set the mood in your waiting room. Select things that people will remember and keep your clientele in mind. Tasteful art pieces or frame work, an aquarium full of exotic fish, or a relaxing water feature adds visual interest and it can help relax your patients before their appointments. The waiting room is also the perfect place to display information about your business and related magazines and books to help your visitors pass the time.
Schedule a Consultation
Considering space for your medical practice can be challenging with multiple factors influencing your day-to-day operations. Whether you are starting from scratch or in the early stages of planning your move, Boulevard LA has the expertise and knowledge to help guide you.
Health and medical professionals strive, every day, to cure ailments and relieve patient symptoms. But success in these areas often depends on environmental elements within the medical practice. Improving medical practice lighting in both color and tone can ease patient anxiety and boost productivity and mood among medical personnel and patients.
How Light Impacts Human Health and Performance
Most medical practices, as well as other healthcare settings, are lit by a combination of natural lighting through windows and skylights, and electric-light sources. It is important to understand how these two types of light sources impact human health and performance. Here are four main mechanisms influenced by lighting:
1. Enables performance of visual tasks
The work environment for nurses and physicians in hospitals is stressful. They are required to perform a range of complex tasks — filling prescriptions, administering medication, and performing other critical patient-care tasks. Inadequate lighting and chaotic environment are likely to compound the burden of stress and lead to errors.
2. Controls the body’s circadian system
When light falls on the retina, it transmits to the hypothalamus controlling the body’s circadian rhythm. If the internal rhythms do not match the workday rhythms, healthcare workers or staff can feel drowsy, tired, and distracted. To help improve productivity and uplift moods in medical personnel and patients, increase the exposure to daylight — preferably through windows and natural lighting.
Exposure to daylight can assist in the following:
Reduces depression among patients with seasonal affective disorder and bipolar depression
Decreases length of stay in hospitals
Improves sleep and circadian rhythms
Lessens agitation among dementia patients, eases pain
Improves adjustment to night-shift work among staff
3. Affects mood and perception
Different lighting conditions affect people’s moods and behaviors at work. However, mood changes do not remain the same across different people with the same lighting conditions. Rather, an individual’s discomfort, preferences, expectations, and gender impact how mood changes.
Overall, daylight is preferred to artificial lighting and proximity to windows is preferred for several reasons: psychological comfort, office appearance and environment, general health, visual health, work performance, and jobs requiring fine observation. Greater sunlight also improves overall satisfaction.
4. Facilitates direct absorption for critical chemical reactions within the body
Light radiation is absorbed directly by the body through the skin and stimulates chemical reactions in the blood and other tissues. As a result, it helps support vitamin D metabolism and prevents jaundice.
Set the Tone and Environment with Lighting
The lighting mechanics and color palette can set the tone for a healthcare facility, whether it’s the product of renovation, interior design or a new-build project.
Types of Lighting Sources
Use energy-efficient natural light where good color rendering and bright, changing visual environments are desirable.
Incorporate natural light into lighting design wherever possible in healthcare settings.
Provide windows for access to natural daylight in patient rooms, along with provisions for controlling glare and temperature.
Orient patient rooms to maximize early-morning sun exposure.
Assess adequacy of lighting levels in staff work areas.
Provide high lighting levels for complex visual tasks.
Schedule a Consultation
When it comes to medical practice lighting and other patient and productivity-focused design choices, we can help. With a strong history in helping medical professionals secure and set up their medical practices, Boulevard Medical Properties can help you, too. Contact us today.
When deciding how many exam rooms your medical office needs, consider the types of visits you typically have and both the number and types of procedures your practice performs. An inadequate amount of space can result in inefficient patient flow and less-than-optimal productivity. Too many rooms will result in wasted overhead.
A rule of thumb for the size of a practice facility is 1200 to 1500 square feet for the first physician and 1000 to 1200 square feet for each additional physician, up to 4 or 5 in total. Some professional suites, such as those for psychiatrists, have less need for space while other practices may require additional space for equipment, such as imaging equipment.
The typical family physician requires three exam rooms and one procedure room, but this can vary in multi-physician or multispecialty practices. To help you get started, here are 4 factors to consider.
One of the key factors affecting doctors when deciding on medical office space is affordability. Depending on your financial situation, you may choose to be frugal when it comes to your practice space. As your practice grows, you can consider additional space as needed or relocate.
The space should include (but is not limited to):
Two treatment rooms
Consider space needed and location when considering affordability. A long term lease for 30,000 square feet in a new development project can sign at $17 per-square foot. All the same, another medical space closer to a major hospital can sign at $25 per-square foot. If affordability and cost efficiency is a factor for space, you can save leasing costs by choosing a location down the street at a lower rate.
2. Operational Needs
The size of your medical office should be determined based on the types of operations that will be performed, number of administrative and medical surgical staff, number of patient visits, and size of frequently used diagnostic and medical equipment.
Having the right sized medical office is one of the most fundamental requirements for any practice. They should be large enough for efficient traffic flow, equipment setup, and administrative and operational activities. It should also provide sufficient space for circulation so that staff doesn’t interfere with ongoing examinations.
Bigger, however, is not always better. Unused space in the room tends to attract unnecessary supply and storage items. Blueprints of medical office setups in different sizes help determine the suitability and efficiency. Below are a few floor plans to consider:
Productivity is enhanced with every step you save. An effective office layout is designed with a circular traffic flow that leads from the waiting room, through reception to exam rooms, and back out the reception. This promotes fluidity; less congestion; and a linear, logical flow. Be sure to design the office space considering foot traffic flow. Your patients are more likely to have a seamless end-to-end experience during their stay and not wander off to restricted areas.
Medical records and consultations need to be kept confidential at all times. To respect the privacy of your patients, office and storage space should be out of all patients’ views. Administrative staff needs to store all private patient information, diagnoses, billing, treatments or medications in filing cabinets/storage that can be secured under lock and key or via a combination lock.
Doctors and technicians must have separate, additional rooms for testing so patients have privacy when services, especially sensitive examinations, are administered. Medications, mobile equipment, bandages, medical supplies, and cleaning agents should be kept in storage closets and out of sight. Ensure that everything has its place, sensitive information is kept secure and away from prying eyes, and that all necessary items can be accessed when absolutely required by permitted individuals.