The look and feel of a ward is just as important as the surgery we do in the healing process of our patients. Dignity through design.
Design shouldn’t only be accessible to the healthy. In fact, good design can go a long way to making those suffering from illness feel that much more comfortable and at ease. The make-over of the Acute Care Surgery Unit at Cape Town’s Groote Schuur Hospital is about making much needed improvements to this extremely busy and important ward through physical and systems design. The project aims to fulfil an important need of the unit. Patients coming out of or going in to surgery can benefit from a ward that has been well designed to include comfort, pleasing aesthetics and that takes practical issues such as better hygiene and more efficient use of space in to account. This focus on aesthetic design and improvement is based on the theory that creating a comforting environment can have a positive effect on patient recovery as well as emotional well-being while staying in the unit. One of the challenges of this project will be to continue running the fully functioning 24/7 surgery unit as normal throughout the renovations, not an easy task for Dr Juan Klopper, Head of the Acute Care Surgery Unit, who is running the project. The year ahead will be tough for this ambitious project but the end result promises benefits that will continue to make a difference to the lives of those in care and in need of extra care.