The European Health Property Network (EuHPN) is holding a workshop for healthcare architecture stakeholders from across Europe with a focus on sharing knowledge on promoting better standards and management of health property throughout the EU. With the theme ‘Research and Evaluation for Care Infrastructure Closer to Home’, the workshop looks at infrastructure development outside the field of grand hospital developments, by concentrating on community hospitals and smaller-scale mental health units, enhanced primary care centres and specialist health secondary care facilities. EuHPN Chair, Simona Agger Ganassi spoke to HealthManagement.org about what trends are leading healthcare construction and architecture and what delegates can expect from the September 25 - 27 event.
Focus: Community hospitals to specialist health secondary care facilities
The last EuHPN workshop held in Madrid had the focus of discussion on the changing models of health and social care. Hospitals are increasingly seen as being centres of highly specialised diagnoses and treatments, while primary and community care have to adopt features which were only available before in secondary care centres. Home care services will have to play a significant role in patient support and education. These trends are essential in going from traditional hospital/silos, towards a web of care extending from hospitals, to communities’ newly-imagined clinical environments, spaces for work and leisure, to home. The workshop of this year will focus on these community infrastructures. Rethinking new environments for mental health facilities setups, different from the traditional long-stay, isolated hospitals certainly constitute one of the most engaging challenges.
EuHPN case studies
During the workshop, the two presentations focusing on specific structures are the ones that will constitute the visits: the Carlanderska Hospital, near Gothenburg, in the Västra Götaland region and Nötkarnan Bergsjön centre, a primary health centre in the Gothenburg area. For the neighbourhood hospital that will be presented, Buurtziekenhuis in the Amsterdam region of the Netherlands, will be in focus.
Challenges facing hospital architecture and construction
It’s difficult to address this generally, even if we limit the field solely to Europe. A common problem is always present before the construction phase - the difficulty in financing the construction of new hospitals. The other challenges come from the difficulty in defining the needs and the models of care that can best satisfy those needs, which have a pattern of change which is faster than the initial perception of them. In certain European countries, an additional problem comes from the excess of bureaucracy in the construction of public health infrastructures. The length of time between the decision of making a new hospital and the beginning and even worse the end of construction put at risk the appropriateness of the hospital before even starting to operate.
What are you most excited about with the EuHPN Workshop in Sweden?
The EuHPN held its last Sweden workshop in 2010. What is, in my point of view, particularly interesting for our next EuHPN congress, is to have the possibility to witness the evolution of country health systems (in this case in Sweden) and consequent service and to compare solutions given to common problems in other parts of
Europe. Our workshops are organised along a single track, to avoid the frustration of missing interesting sessions or even single presentations because of overlapping.
For us, a good result is measured by the interest shown by the number of people attending the workshop for the issues discussed and how active the participation is in
Click here for details on the EuHPN 2018 Workshop.