DESIGNING THE DIGITAL HOSPITAL
Most buildings are made up of spaces that we live and work in: walls and fixtures will become what they primarily are through how their inhabitants have decided to use them. In contrast, a hospital is essentially equipment that is used in accordance with the way it is built. Each department has its specific rooms, whereas each room has its equipment and function, etc.
Furthermore, when we envisage introducing digital technologies into hospitals, the entire hospital ends up being reconsidered (and invented!) to accommodate the new ways of providing the same service.
Low power systems were nothing more than accessory systems? With patients’ files in digital format, they become a strategic asset for the hospital and even the territory and therefore, must be designed as such.
Does data aggregation require real-time knowledge of the location of patients and equipment? In this case, the entire hospital will have to be covered by a geolocation system.
Does logistics abandon the inefficient and bureaucratic organizations set up in the twentieth century and does it cultivate the just-in-time and regulated supply approach? Robots, automated storage areas, storage and retrieval machines, and even pneumatic systems are arriving on an unprecedented scale. Spaces are different, organizations are being modified along with layouts, doors are becoming automated, etc.
What is the aim? Is it to have systems that monitor the technical conditions in which patients are treated in real time? The building management system is being transformed into a hypervision system that is capable of coordinating both patient data and building data.
The digital hospital is also a different way of accommodating and taking care of patients, a different way of treating them, with different organizations, etc.
For the design of the new Hospital in Lens, with very little to go on, SETEC engineers had to develop these new organizations in a unique and industrious partnership together with architect Michel Beauvais and the client.