Harmoniously designed wards help patients recover

Last Updated: Nov 02, 2011, 16:04 PM IST

London: Harmoniously designed hospital wards not only appeal aesthetically but also help patients recover both physically and mentally, new research says.

"We want to help patients to get involved in their rehabilitation, a side-effect of which can be an improvement in self-confidence," says Kristina Sahlqvist, researcher at the University of Gothenburg School of Design and Crafts, Sweden.

The project drew on all the expertise used on a ward, with inputs from neurologists, rehabilitation doctors, nurses, psychologists, occupational therapists and physiotherapists.

The result was a conceptual solution for an optimal rehabilitation ward, according to a statement from the university.

"Our concept gives the ward (place)... where patients and their families can prepare food and eat together, which allows for a more normal way of spending time together in a hospital environment," says Sahlqvist.

Sahlqvist has also teamed up with a designer and a researcher at the Swedish School of Textiles in Borås, on a project where they redesigned furniture, developed easy-grip cups and cutlery and used smart textiles for patients.

The concept includes a table and chairs, a rug and a muff with integral heating, a cardigan with speakers and a soft bracelet that is also a remote control.

There are other interesting tricks in the field of neuro-architecture where it is possible, for example, to use spatial expressions to improve learning. Although these are currently used predominantly in schools, they could also have potential for the elderly, the study states.

The focus of the rural development ministry has now shifted to building household toilets, Ramesh noted.

IANS