HGA Wins EBD Touchstone Award for Advancement of the Evidence-Based Design Process


HGA Architects and Engineers has won a Silver Level Evidence-Based Design (EBD) Touchstone Award for its research-based planning approach of a medical-surgical unit at Froedtert & The Medical College of Wisconsin in Milwaukee.

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Presented by the Center for Health Design, the inaugural EBD Touchstone Awards recognize outstanding achievement across three touchstones of EBD process: Collaboration, Evaluation, and Sharing.

The award submission detailed pre- and post-occupancy research methods used to plan the medical-surgical unit at Froedtert, in which the design team combined Dr. John Kotter’s eight-step change-management theory with EBD tools and Lean strategies to transition from a centralized to decentralized nursing unit to improve workflow and patient care.

The jurors praised the project for conducting “very well-documented research” and for engaging hospital staff throughout the planning process “to create the solutions.”

The research findings previously were featured in “Taking the Right Steps: The Role of Design Research in Change Management of a Redesign Project” in Healthcare Design in October 2016, “Making the Case for Practice-Based Research and the Imperative Role of Design Practitioners” in HERD Journal in November 2016, and “Lean + Evidence-Based Design + Change Management: Merging Approaches for an Inpatient Build-Out Design Project” at the 8th Annual National Nursing Research Symposium in June 2017.

The HGA project team included Kurt Spiering, FAIA, Principal; Kara Freihoefer, PhD, CID, EDAC, LEED ID+C, Senior Researcher; Kiki Werkheiser, EDAC, CLSSGB, Work Process Specialist; Lori Magalen, Medical Planner; and Brent Peterson, PE, Lean Workflow Engineer.

Freihoefer previously won the George Pressler Under 40 Award for her healthcare planning research, and the 2017 Environmental Design Research Association (EDRA) Certificate of Research Excellence (CORE) for her study with HealthEast, “On-Stage/Off-Stage Clinic Design: Implications for Operational Efficiencies, Staff Collaboration and Privacy.”

The Evidence-Based Design Touchstone Awards were presented at the annual Healthcare Design Expo & Conference, where HGA presented six sessions November 11 - 14.

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