Where is my Chair? Seating in Healthcare Spaces

When considering furniture in hospitals and other healthcare settings, a careful examination of space is required. Cleaning should be easy, spaced out wisely, and aesthetically pleasing.

Hospitals and healthcare centers have seen more visitors than ever in the past couple of years — and it’s no secret why. Transited areas in healthcare settings have always served a specific purpose: to provide a place to wait for news of loved ones. But healthcare settings are rapidly becoming popular due to a growing interest in them, as we begin to understand how furniture choices prescribe people’s behavior in these highly emotional and traversed spaces.

The Two Sides Of The Coin

One of the main features in healthcare settings are the transited areas that families and visitors frequent. They need comfortable rooms as they often spend extended periods in them — the furniture should be easy to clean, spaced out wisely, and have a calming and pleasing aesthetic.

Let’s look at the issue from a different perspective. When it comes to healthcare, the clinicians, doctors, and nurses are in charge. They provide outstanding care consistently, and various factors contribute to their well-being at work. From a psychological perspective, policy change is crucial. In terms of physical health, comfortable furniture is essential.

How To Choose The Right Furniture For The Right Area In Healthcare Settings

Healthcare organizations, which consist of numerous departments, cannot rely on a one-size-fits-all approach. There are often long waiting times, even in the lobby area, a thoroughfare, and a buzzing hub of patients, staff, family members, and suppliers.

For lobby areas, reconfigurable furniture (like Dauphin’s Reefs Collaborative Lounge Seating) is a convenient solution. Group the seats for when a few family members arrive together or separate the pieces so a supplier can take a break while waiting for a visitor to pass. Furniture in hospitals and healthcare settings is vital. For the focus of this article, we have concentrated on five main areas: waiting rooms, doctor’s offices, office furniture, nursing stations, cafeterias, and miscellaneous additions.

Waiting Rooms

Figuring out what is essential in waiting areas is pretty intuitive. The proper ratio of seating to traffic is the first consideration, and we then move on to the aspect of cleanability. Furniture Design Features and Healthcare Outcomes make a sensible assertion: seating without grooves, wipe-down upholstery, or plastic and non-porous surface materials are core requests that reduce infection risks in healthcare spaces. Cempa beam check these boxes. Since they save space– making the area seem more orderly–beam seating is preferable to stackable chairs, which can pose a trip or fall hazard. 

Doctor’s Offices

When they are not consulting, doctors spend hours on bureaucratic tasks. Comfortable workstations are necessary to keep medical and administrative staff performing at their peak. In such a career, ergonomic design for healthcare furniture is essential. For these areas, traditional desk chairs, such as Dauphin’s Adjust are a flexible solution to the more expected fixed seating options, as they offer lumbar support and boast the unique Syncro-Quickshift mechanism for a wide range of body weights.

Another comfortable option for on-call doctors who need to get 40 winks during a long shift is the 4+ Relax High-Back Lounge, which has reclining possibilities. Its enveloping sides also help doctors take a more relaxed cat nap than they could in a regular desk chair or bench-style seating.

When patients are admitted–especially children, pregnant women, and intensive care patients–family members are more likely to spend days and nights by their side. This recurrent scenario is one of the more comfortable options for those accompanying family members, who will be seated most of the time but can lay back and try to sleep if they wish.

4+ Relax

Nursing Stations

Long shifts for healthcare providers once again pull comfort into the limelight. Nurses gather around their stations to complete administrative tasks or enjoy some hot coffee when they are not rushing off their feet. During these breaks, which are crucial to their well-being, caregivers can retreat to the cocoon-style seating  Atelier 2 offers.

Atelier 2


A cafeteria can make any healthcare facility a more pleasant place to eat, whether for staff lunches that break up 24-hour workdays or for families that spend extended periods eating sandwiches from vending machines. It improves the user experience and contributes a relaxing vibe to healthcare areas. 

Clear The Air

The ion cloud is a scientifically proven air purification system that reduces the number of harmful particles in the air, thus inactivating viruses, neutralizing bacteria, and rendering pollen, dust, smoke particles, and fungal spores harmless.

A Note On Cleanability

The furniture listed here is also available with Dauphin's Cempa MicroSilver poly finish, an additive integrated during the manufacturing process that emits silver ions, an antimicrobial effect that will last throughout the furniture’s lifetime, such as Cempa — ideal for waiting rooms.

The MicroSilver is a groundbreaking material for healthcare seating. Antibacterial and antifungal properties in seating are highly relevant to prevent the transmission of infections. Every step we can take to ensure lowered infection transmission rates should feature highly on our agenda.

When cleanability is such an important consideration, designers look to use their creative license within a set of boundaries that are critical in a hospital setting. Little Perillo, in café areas of healthcare facilities, emphasizes the modern and avant-garde design.

4+ Relax

Further Healthcare Design Contemplations

Moving away from specific solutions for certain areas in healthcare design, we approach a more generalized checklist that designers do well to consider. Inspired by Furniture Design Features and Healthcare Outcomes, their exhaustive list highlights EBD contemplations that efficiently improve healthcare outcomes, all thanks to the furniture used in these facilities, and we have selected some of them to share here:

  • Armrests help unsteady patients stand without losing balance, minimizing the risk of falls.
  • Configurable furniture helps improve privacy for medically-sensitive interactions and can facilitate coordination for healthcare providers.
  • Adequate lighting wattage increases the visual capacity of workers and patients alike.
  • Biophilic design, such as natural wood furniture, has reduced patient recovery time.
  • Manufacturer warranties that cover patient diversity, including safety for morbidly-obese individuals.
  • Almost any type of furniture adapts to healthcare settings. It is crucial to consider and customize the types of upholstery and finishes to make them suitable for this type of setting.

Human-Centered Design For Human Health

In environments such as hospitals, patient care is the utmost priority. However, providing good conditions for caregivers to work efficiently is a must. While policy and culture are central to the proper functioning of a healthcare facility, the physical aspects, such as design, play an essential role in making the environment as productive as possible. 

When the people on both sides of the relationship have a fighting chance, thanks to the carefully thought-out design, the costs associated with healthcare plummet, the user experience significantly increases, and the resounding advantage of happier, healthier individuals speaks for itself. Being able to do this is the epitome of human-centered design.

In partnership with Castleberry Media and its Green Initiative, we are committed to taking care of content is responsible with the environment.
Source Compilation

“How Can Biophilic Hospital Design Aid Mental Health and Patient Recovery?” Forest Homes, https://www.foresthomesstore.com/blogs/decor-for-wellbeing/how-can-biophilic-hospital-design-aid-mental-health-and-patient-recovery 

Malone, Eileen, et al. Furniture Design Features and Healthcare Outcomes. 2011 https://www.healthdesign.org/system/files/FurnitureOutcomes2011%5B1%5D%20rev%2012-15.pdf

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