Rethinking the Waiting Experience in Healthcare Environments

The Healthcare Design industry has been sharing trends with Hospitality and Workplace for some time to create spaces that feel less clinical. A Hospital is probably the most varied Mixed Used building in the Design and Construction Industry. The possibilities to improve the users experience through its design are endless; and the amount of time these users spend waiting is extensive. How can designers break the mold of a typical waiting area to create spaces that are more user oriented? Spaces that welcome new patients, that feel more humane, that inspire and enhance well-being? Spaces that use technology to educate and liberate? Spaces that push the boundaries and feel more like added amenities to the healthcare experience without increasing the cost of the project? It is critical that waiting areas are designed to protect physical and emotional health, that promote calmness, and that include positive distractions. This is the time to rethink what waiting areas look and feel today and expand the possibilities to other needs and areas within the healthcare environment. Rethinking the user experience in healthcare is critical to change the stigma of clinical environments into holistic and supportive spaces that generate positive outcomes for all: new and existing patients, caregivers, and the clinical and support staff.

Diana Araoz-Fraser, LSSYB, Assoc AIA, IIDA

Vice President, Senior Healthcare Designer


Diana is a Vice-President/Studio Design Leader at HKS Inc. She is a passionate Healthcare Designer that thrives at finding creative and appropriate solutions in healthcare projects with varying size and complexity. She is committed to always enhance the user/patient experience in the projects that she embarks. Diana’s collaborative spirit excels thru her involvement in projects from conception to finish. With over 17 years of experience and substantial international experience, Diana has a broad understanding of design practices. Diana received her undergraduate degree in Interior Design from Purdue University and holds a Master of Science from Arizona State University. She has published articles and has participated in several conferences about healthcare design. She is an Adjunct Professor at George Washington University and sits at the Board of Directors of The Children’s INN of NIH.

This content will not be available until 06/10/2024 at 8:00 AM (EDT)