Updating Practice Design to Increase Patient Comfort
Posted in Case Study.
May-Grant Obstetrics & Gynecology – Lancaster, PA
Type: Obstetrics & Gynecology Practice
Location – Lancaster, PA
Square Footage: 3,000 sq. ft
Project timeline: Six months, in three phases of work
Office Opened: Early 2018
Crafting a space that helps your customers feel at ease can be tricky, particularly in a highly intimate service space. This was the challenge faced by May-Grant Obstetrics & Gynecology. As a highly-successful medical practice, May-Grant has large numbers of patients and provides top-notch service. The scale of the practice enables them to provide specialized services and high-availability, but also creates the risk of feeling impersonal and leaving patients feeling like a number, rather than a valued and cared-for client.
Aligning Interior Design with Brand Promises
When Real Services was contacted to participate in the renovation, it became clear that the space did not convey the right brand message to prospective clients to make it clear to them the quality of care that they would receive. The design of the space was not helping to create the sense of personal service and attention that patients want. The reception area was a large, undifferentiated space, and the exam rooms felt very institutional, lacking in elements of warmth and comfort.
This renovation provided a variety of challenges, not the least of which was that the practice needed to stay open during the renovation. Therefore, this 30,000 sq. ft. renovation was tackled in three phases, all of which were completed within an approximately 6-month timespan. Additionally, this is a medical facility, so Real Services’ prior experience in the medical space helped ensure that they understood how patient-care requirements needed to be supported.
The lobby space needed to remain large in order to accommodate all the practice’s patients, but the design was updated to give it a more cozy and intimate feel. The previous open design had often left new patients unsure of where to start. To address this, a large, radiused front desk was added that is staffed by a May-Grant team member, making it obvious to patients where they should report and check-in and providing a friendly face to answer questions.
The positioning and design of the desk also helped to begin segmenting and creating distinct areas within the waiting area, without making the space feel cramped or closed-off. The height of the entry space was lowered, reducing the cavernous feel. High-quality flooring and warm colors increased the comfort level for clients as well.
“The redesign of the lobby area made a big impact. Our clients appreciate the feel of the space and it really helps to support the practice’s overall values and approach to patient care.” – Mona Engle, CEO/Practice Administrator at Drs. May-Grant Associates
Updates Beyond Reception
Exam rooms and common areas were made to feel more personal and comfortable through the introduction of fresh millwork with new medical-grade cabinetry and countertops that provided ample storage and work spaces that were easy to maintain. New laminate plank flooring provided the space with a high-end residential ambiance rather to replace the previous clinical feel.
A large practice means more of everything; patients, staff and equipment. This higher volume of people and tools needed to have an impact on space design. Therefore, these practical realities of managing traffic flow were reviewed and planned for during the redesign. By widening the hallways, it is now easier for patients and team-members alike to maneuver past one another and transport equipment or supplies from one location to another. During the renovation, security was also increased through the addition of internal electronic locks, providing patients and staff with a higher degree of comfort and safety.
Improving Staff Spaces
Patient experience wasn’t the only consideration for this redesign. The doctors were very involved in the project, with the Real Services team focused on building consensus on it’s direction. Since the doctors and associates at May-Grant generally do not have dedicated individual offices, this project provided them with a lounge area designed to meet their needs with comfortable seating and an open collaborative workspace.
It was also important to provide the doctor’s and staff with spaces that provide privacy for internal practice activities. For a practice of this scale, the inclusion of meeting and conference rooms to support internal collaboration in more formal setting was critical to improving the overall usability of the space.
Operating During Renovations
Updating spaces to serve a variety of needs without disrupting business takes careful planning. Real Services approached this project with an overall plan that broke the work into three phases. During each phase, specific areas of the practice were blocked off to allow for renovations while the remainder of the space stayed in operation.
The team at May-Grant is truly committed to providing their patients with high-quality and personal service. With the help of Real Services, the spaces in which they work help to reinforce these key values and leave patients feeling valued and appreciated.
Interested in making your space do more for your clients, staff or brand? Contact Real Services today to see how they can help.