Medical Office Design: How to Make Your Waiting Room More Comfortable
If you ask me, waiting rooms are the worst part about going to the doctor’s. Being seated for hours on a plastic chair next to someone who can’t stop coughing is certainly an unpleasant experience. So, if you’re running a medical office, it’s advisable to make your waiting room as comfortable as possible if you want to ensure high patient satisfaction.
Many waiting rooms look more or less the same: a row of plastic chairs or a bench near a wall and some side tables cluttered with old magazines. Not only do spaces like these look depressing, but they also feel confining as they force you to sit next to someone you don’t know. To give your patients more freedom, it’s recommended to include a variety of modern medical office furniture in separate clusters.
For instance, you can try grouping some chairs around a coffee table which can serve as a private corner for families. Additionally, a children’s corner with colourful and child-friendly furniture and toys can be perfect for entertaining your younger patients without bothering anybody. Creating a few similar seating clusters around your office can give your patients a sense of privacy and control.
Additionally, you also want to choose modern medical office furniture that reflects your healthcare practice. The style, material and colour of the furniture will promote your unique brand. For instance, modern practices that use cutting-edge methods and equipment will benefit from pieces with clean lines, like for instance contemporary or Scandinavian furniture. Pick a palette of soothing colours such as white, neutrals, or soft pastels that can help your patients feel more relaxed.
In addition to furniture, décor can also help reduce anxiety in patients who are nervous about their appointment or results. To promote a serene environment, many interior designers advice to include some sort of decorative piece that includes water. This can be a small indoor fountain, or wall posters picturing a tranquil sea, or a flowing river. The right ambient light can also help to create a soothing atmosphere. For instance, with the help of dimmable LED lights, you can modify the brightness in your waiting room to simulate the effects of the sun.
And finally, once you have everything covered, you should try to find ways to keep your patients mentally engaged while waiting. When the patients have their focus occupied with something, the wait time can feel a lot shorter. Obviously, this means installing free WiFi for all patients to use. But don’t stop there. Remember, some of your patients may be missing work to get to their appointments. So, by providing workstations and charging stations in your waiting room you can help them use their wait time to be productive. Massage chairs, coffee machines and other small luxuries can also keep patients occupied while waiting.