It’s hard to believe how much our world has changed since the last issue of Healthcare Design, and how much it may stand to change in the time between penning this letter and the magazine making its way to you. The COVID-19 pandemic is causing a rapid evolution in the way we live and work—particularly as this industry grapples with how best to respond to the unfolding crisis.
The stories we’ve heard from you are harrowing. A juror for one of our programs stepped away to focus on producing personal protective equipment for his organization’s frontline staffers. A firm completed a 1,000-bed hospital within days to answer patient surge. An in-progress hospital project not expected to open until next year shifted gears to make some of its ED and inpatient spaces available now. A board member emailed me at 2 a.m., sharing a personal note about the daunting burden of having so many lives at stake and how he’s trying to find an anchor in the storm.
And through this, what’s been delivered is astounding. From triage tents and drive-through testing sites to med/surg units converted to isolation spaces and convention centers reimagined as healthcare facilities, this industry is answering the call to action.
Here at Healthcare Design, we’re working to keep you informed as you navigate an extraordinary time. The editorial team has created a robust COVID-19 Coverage and
Resources page on our website (HCDmagazine.com), where you’ll find daily updates on news, industry insights and perspectives, and an archive of content focused on related topics such as infection control and biocontainment. Additionally, industry leaders are submitting personal accounts of what they and their firms are facing, and the solutions being delivered, in our “Notes from the Field” series. You’ll find some of this coverage in a special COVID-19 report.
Additionally, as we leverage digital solutions as a method to keep us closer together while physically apart, we’re also introducing webinars exploring how COVID-19 is affecting healthcare design now and going forward. Watch our website for details on upcoming events and on-demand access to those that have already taken place.
While so much is uncertain about where we go from here, as the country begins its slow and careful path toward reopening and inventing a new normal, what’s clear is that we as an industry will walk away with many lessons learned. I’ve always been impressed by healthcare designers’ willingness to share information for the good of improving our built environment; but now, more than ever, I’ve seen you all pull together, freely offering details on what you’re doing and how it’s working.
Years from now, our healthcare environments and the patients, staff, and families in them will benefit greatly from that.