When you think of a healing environment, what comes to mind? A spa, a Japanese garden, perhaps a corner of your house? Few of us would immediately think of their local health clinic or a hospital. But that is beginning to change as healthcare organizations pay attention to a growing body of research that clearly demonstrates the benefits of a healing environment.

Among other things, the research reveals that specific design changes in healthcare environments can reduce our stress and alleviate the consequences of that stress. These changes can also help reduce medical errors and hospital-acquired infections, while improving staff morale and efficiency. 

Our environments are:

  • Physical (buildings, layout of streets)
  • Social (people with whom we share space)
  • Natural (air, water, earth)