HAIO Patient Room Challenge

The Healthcare Associated Infections Organization (HAIO), in Boston, spent a few years reviewing clinical, scientific, evidence-based, and operational presentations on healthcare-associated infections (HAI) in inpatients. The studies confirmed that hand hygiene was a significant factor in preventing infections, but the HAIO also learned that the design of rooms had an important role to play in the spread of pathogenic microbes. It was clear that designers can make impactful decisions on materials and detailing, location of equipment, arrangement of furniture, HVAC systems, occupant behavior, and ease and effectiveness of cleaning.

In response to a challenge from the HAIO, Yeadon Space Agency partnered with NBBJ to design a new generation of inpatient rooms that would provide a measurable reduction in the amount of pathogens. The challenge sought “a significant increase in the completeness of cleaning and/or a significant decrease in time of cleaning without a decrease in completeness when the test design is compared to the control.”

Our team developed a design proposition that was evidence-based and included recent research discoveries in a number of areas, including many advancements in antimicrobial nanomaterials and other advanced materials that Yeadon Space Agency recommended.