Design of assisted living facilities shifts to meet boomer tastes, needs

Design trends in assisted living facilities are evolving to blend home and hospitality finishes and amenities while using evidence-based design to refine strategies.

By Healthcare Facilities Today

Design trends in assisted living facilities are evolving to blend home and hospitality finishes and amenities while using evidence-based design to assess the strategies that actually benefit seniors.

More seniors are staying home for longer, says an article in Healthcare Design, so assisted living facilities are changing their amenities to make the transition from home to institution as seamless as possible.   

Trends include providing dining facilities with a restaurant-like feel and which support social interaction, such as a bar, bistro or ice cream parlor. Facility amenities are also borrowing from hospitality with sports facilities, art gallery space, general stores, and on-site health services.

However, designers are recognizing that people don't want to live long-term in a hotel and so must strike a balance between high-end finishes and treatments while still being residential.

Research is also being used to evaluate resident's preferences and needs. According to the article, one study found that color and pattern by themselves are not sufficient wayfinding mechanisms with a senior population, which needs more unique visual cues. A connection to familiar faces has also been found to be important in assisted living.

And unlike assisted living facilities of the past, current designs must be technologically savvy both to support resident's wireless technology needs and electronic medical records.

Read the article.

April 15, 2013

Topic Area: Interior Design

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