The birth of a baby is a joyous, celebrated occasion and ideally happens in a sacred or special place. While modern medicine has dramatically improved the health of mother and baby before, during and after birth, a cold, institutional setting can detract from this significant, special event. We worked with The Birth Place at St. Anthony Regional Hospital to create a birthing center that focuses on the comfort and well-being of mother, baby and family.
An important part of the care the family receives is directly related to the ease with which caregivers can perform their necessary tasks—making the design work well for caregivers is important to the care that patients receive.
To foster a sense of comfort, ease and “home,” the LDRP suites are designed to help patients feel more at home—a TV with VCR and DVD player, stereo system, microwave, refrigerator, sink for bathing infants and whirlpool tub all help promote a sense of comfort and “home.”
Although most births do not require much medical intervention, all the suites are set up to be procedure-ready at a moment's notice. Residential-looking cabinets in each patient room conceal any supplies or monitoring devices that might be needed. Unless a procedure is needed, the patient won't have to face the institutional image that a collection of monitors and medical devices provides, and will instead see what look like residential cabinets and closets. Any supplies caregivers might need are stored in the room, allowing staff to easily and efficiently provide care while affording the mother and family maximum privacy and freedom from unwanted interruptions and noise.
The entrance to the unit is soft and welcoming. The viewing area for the nursery, with its large windows, is nestled under a starry cloud—the soffit twinkles with fiberoptic twinkle lights. The cloud hugs the space inside the nursery and creates an inviting viewing space outside the nursery. Newborns lying on their backs in cribs can watch the soft, comforting glow of the lights on the ceiling, even though their eyes can't focus at a distance. Visitors to The Birth Place are also welcomed by the comforting, warm glow
This renovation has positively affected patients and staff, and it sets a high standard of patient-centered design
PROJECT CATEGORY Remodel/Renovation (completed June 2001)
CHIEF ADMINISTRATOR Edward H. Smith, Jr., VP/CFO, (712) 792-3581
FIRM Horty Elving, (612) 332-4422
DESIGN TEAM Leo Monster, Project Principal; Tim Rice, Project Architect; Linda Engel, Project Interior Designer; Jim Elving, Project Engineer
PHOTOGRAPHY Rick Moore; Franz Hall
BED CAPACITY 7
TOTAL BUILDING AREA N/A
TOTAL LAND AREA N/A
TOTAL COST $617,048