Design Disaster

23. May 2012 04:53

I spent five days in the hospital last month, and once the painkillers wore off, I was stuck in a hospital bed with little to do but notice that the hospital's interior-design firm should have been fired--or brought before a firing squad.

As far as rooms for two patients go, mine was rather spacious, but whoever hung the privacy curtain to divide the room in two parts needed to go back to measuring class.  I had 1/3 of a two-person room on my side of the curtain.  Math never was my best subject, but by my calculation, my roommate had 2/3 of the room.  Her half included the closet and the bathroom.  This for a person who was never out of bed for four of the five days I was there.

I didn't have to reach too far to my right to touch that curtain, and to my left, there was enough room for a chair and an IV pole, if you stacked one behind the other.  This meant that every time I wanted to get up and walk around, the chair had to be moved, because the IV needed to be parked behind it in order for the tubes to reach my arm in the bed.

I don't wish ill health on anyone, but I'm convinced that the designers of that room should be required to spend a night or two in it--on the small "half" of the space.

You'll never hear me complain about the care I received; the nursing staff was unfailingly friendly, concerned, caring and knowledgeable.  But designers and contractors need to be reminded:  Measure twice, cut once.

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