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Monday, December 6, 2021  |  11:15 AM - 12:15 PM

Open to Conference Attendees Only

Facilitating Happiness: How the Built Environment Defines Patient Experience

Zachary Benedict
Principal, MKM architecture + design
Tom Edwards, PMP, CHC
Senior Project Manager, Medxcel Planning, Design, and Construction
Matt Sparling, AIA, LEED AP
Principal, MKM architecture + design

The built environment is a behavioral system. The facilities we inhabit shape our conduct and funnel our perceptions of the world around us. This is crucial in healthcare settings. The experiences our buildings offer, from the parking lot to the patient bed, set the stage for a patient's clinical outcome. This presentation will not only define the key strategies healthcare facilities can implement to increase patient satisfaction (addressing noise, cleanliness, wayfinding, etc.), it will provide a dynamic discussion surrounding the empirical research correlating facility design and emotional well-being. For many, healthcare facilities often house some of the most stressful moments in people's lives and the buildings we design and operate need to understand their role in providing comfort to the people they serve. Participants will learn how their facilities can better support patients and discuss strategies that can be implemented in a variety of healthcare settings.


1. Present research assessing the impact the built environment has on influencing patient satisfaction in care environments.
2. Outline components that have traditionally defined patient satisfaction (noise, wayfinding, etc.) and present strategies to implement improvements.
3. Discuss the unique strategies Ascension Health is implementing to impact patient satisfaction within their facility management standardization.
4. Describe research connecting happiness and the built environment to define how healthcare settings can support emotional well-being for patients.


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