Keys to Achieving Healing Healthcare Environments

Creating a satisfying healthcare environment requires holistically combining the needs of the patient, caregivers and loved ones to build the most effective design. Through our years of experience, we’ve seen first-hand that workplace design improves the overall health of employees and we are excited to be taking this next step in the healthcare industry by aiding those whose job it is to heal persons in the hospital by creating natural, healing environments through design.

We believe a customized design experience is crucial in fostering comfortable healing processes, promoting productivity among hospital staff and improving patient and caregiver safety, resulting in overall patient satisfaction.

Design for Patients & Their Loved Ones

A focus on designing facilities that cater to patient and family needs and comfort can aid in reducing stress and generating faster healing times. If the environment is calming and comfortable, anxieties about the visit can be dispelled and overall satisfaction with the experience can increase.

The Patient Room

Creating an environment within the patient room that is both safe for the patient and efficient for staff is imperative considering that patients spend most of their hospital stay within their room.

Kimball Health | Overbed Tables

Being confined to a room during the duration of a hospital stay can cause stress; therefore, providing adequate storage and customized power modules is beneficial in providing a positive experience. These features should be easily accessible by the patient to reduce stress and allow for nursing staff to assist patients with more critical issues in lieu of spending time helping with simpler tasks.

Kimball Health | Sanctuary

Patients’ visitors spend time in their room as well, so providing them with customized solutions, such as power capabilities and storage drawers for personal items, can help them feel comfortable within the room. If visitors enjoy being in the patient’s room worry-free, their focus can remain on helping their loved one recover.

This Kimball Meadow Patient Recliner allows for ease in patient transport while still adhering to patient safety. Movement is free and easy with rotating casters, but the chair can still be locked into position if necessary. Other adjustable features, such as the dual-sided Trendelenburg capability (which raises the patient’s feet above their head), an independent footrest operation and infinite back controls accommodate customized treatment services.

Kimball Health | Meadow

If a patient’s stay in the hospital will be lengthy, family may desire the ability to spend the night in the room with the patient. Accommodations for them to comfortably stay with their loved one encourages participation in the patient’s care and leads to better outcomes for patient recovery.

Kimball Health | Villa Sleep Sofa

The Waiting Room

Considering that family members play an important role in helping their loved ones heal, it is also essential to have destination spaces for them to connect, find respite and rejuvenate to allow for the best possible experience for any visitors, ultimately allowing them to solely focus on their loved ones needs.

Kimball Office | Pairings

Customized furniture in waiting rooms can aid in the physical and emotional needs of a person waiting to speak to a medical professional or awaiting news on their loved one receiving treatment. The versatile Kimball Pairings Lounge Based Collection is designed to be able to work alone or in combination with other pieces, offering endless configurations to achieve comfort.

Kimball Office | Villa

This collection’s ability to be designed for any space allows a person to actively control their level of comfort, hopefully easing nerves about an already uncomfortable and anxiety-filled visit to the hospital or doctor’s office.

Design for Healthcare Providers

While design for healing centers on the needs of the patients and their loved ones, it also focuses on the needs of the caregiving professionals as they are in constant and direct contact with the patients – ultimately responsible for overall satisfaction of the health organization. Productivity, efficiency, health and safety are all contributors of increased success in overall outcomes and patient satisfaction and should be considered when designing the ultimate healing space.

Productivity and Efficiency

With adjustable technology, caregivers can optimize communication. Trust between patient and caregiver during treatment is critical, and increasing the level of engagement between the two can cultivate that necessary sense of trust. Effective communication can enhance overall patient satisfaction with the quality of care they have received.

Additionally, adjustable technology can reduce discomfort and provide important postural benefits for caregivers working lengthy hours, most of which up and on their feet. Minimizing discomfort aids in their ability to work productively during these long hours and reduce the risk of any concentration issues that often lead to errors in patient care.


The principles of ergonomics minimize risk of injury, discomfort and error rates while maximizing productivity. Using design technology that highlights adjustability, flexibility, support and easy use can reduce error rate in treatment, simultaneously improving patient care and outcomes.

Humanscale | Mobile Cart

Ergonomic mobile carts allow for caregivers to spend more time caring for the patients and less time worrying about technology, ultimately allowing them to visit with more patients. Since these carts increase mobility, there is an added health benefit for the healthcare providers. Additionally, they save crucial time and energy by allowing for real-time data entry by caregivers, reducing the risk of error that can result from remembering the information and compiling it later.


Technology that enhances productivity and ergonomic improvement for caregivers can also create a safer environment for patient care. Since there is a direct correlation between nurse fatigue, patient care and safety – maximizing patient safety while minimizing risk of error is essential.

Humanscale | Pony Saddle

The Saddle and Pony Saddle seats are ideal for working closely on the computer and offer a healthy way of sitting if leaning back on a back rest is not an option. Comfortable and versatile, these seats improve posture and allow for long-term comfort.

The V6 technology wall station was engineered & designed by the Humanscale Design Studio specifically for the healthcare environment.

Humanscale | Adjustable Wall Stations

This customized wall station supports a monitor and keyboard – along with hardware, shelves and accessories – that allows for easy positioning. Comfort for the caregiver and effective communication between them and the patient can be effectively maintained through this ergonomic design.

Managing fatigue and providing solutions to minimize fatigue is key for maintaining high-quality patient care and safety within the healthcare system. Designing spaces for caregivers and providers directly responsible for patient care can improve overall work place well-being. Offering designs that highlight productivity, ergonomic improvements and safety can streamline caregivers’ jobs and make positive impacts on the work environment and with patient care.

Final Thoughts

Focusing directly on the needs of patients, their family and those who work in the healthcare industry is critical in overall satisfaction with a healing experience. A customized design directly allows for comfortable accommodations and ergonomic improvements, increased productivity, enhanced safety measures and beneficial patient care and outcomes.

About the Author

Dana Marble has an interior design background & worked in the architectural industry for 10+ years before joining Corporate Design Interiors.  As a healthcare account executive, Dana is able to apply her project experience and help her clients develop patient-centric environments, which promotes successful business and increases overall satisfaction rates.

About CDI

CDI is a cutting-edge commercial furniture dealership that believes thoughtful design and strategic planning are critical components in the success of every project. We can help companies achieve their business vision and goals and help maintain your workplace investment. CDI creates functional and inspiring interiors designed to foster employee well-being, productivity and engagement.

CDI is a “Select” Kimball Office dealer. The “Select” status is Kimball’s premier dealer designation, which demonstrates dealership excellence in sales, service, financial stability, business processes and more.

For more information:

Contact Us

Corporate Office & Showroom:
1711 Paramount Ct., Waukesha, WI  53186
P  262.521.1010

Dana Marble
P 262.544.8694

Healthcare Waiting Rooms | Connection. Respite. Rejuvenation.

Healthcare waiting rooms are being purposefully designed to offer a variety of destinations. Facilities are enhancing the overall experience by inviting patients & their families to reduce stress & find strength in whichever method suits them best.
Kimball Health offers a wide range of waiting room furniture that can be applied to the three most common destinations for recharging in a healthcare environment.
Spruce Lounge setting _Cropped
Connection. Space which allows multiple family members to sit together & have a comfortable conversation outside of the patient room. Technology supports families to connect remotely in addition to face-to-face conversation.

Respite. When loved ones need time & space to turn their minds off, correctly designed seating destinations provide areas that alleviate stress.

Rejuvenation. Cafe spaces & seating arrangements located throughout an expansive hospital, radiate positive energy and are a great space for families to visit when they need a little boost.

By identifying locations for each of these destinations, healthcare facilities are able to provide their visitors with the best possible experience.

CONNECTION | Kimball – Pairings

Merging simple lounge collections, this versatile series was designed to provide quiet, solitary zones in tandem with more lively gathering spaces.ThoughtStarters_Pairings_LongandLean_5-10Pairings adapts to its surrounding environment, supporting varying degrees of privacy in an era of open space engagement. Family members, and staff alike, can utilize this lounge offering for impromptu conversation space or a place to sit down & quick recharge.  Gallery_Pairings_6-FINAL

For family members needing to connect with loved ones in remote locations, having access to power is crucial. And, with a variety of technology & privacy offerings, Pairings provides the perfect place to sit for any length of time.  The shades offer for acoustical and visual privacy for particularly sensitive conversations.

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RESPITE | Kimball – Spruce & Nash

Spruce is a family of seating extending across lounge, guest, tandem and patient. This highly adaptable, mid-century modern collection offers both aesthetic and functional value. The high back lounge chair, shown in the photo below, gives family members a great place to take solitude and escape from stress, even just for a few moments.

Paired with gorgeous architectural elements and cheerful upholstery, the guest (and bariatric guest) chair offer comfortable seating in spaces designed for spiritual reflection.

Lookbook_Saffron12-15_4 _ cropped

And with beautifully designed arm caps & clean out details, the Spruce collection can be utilized in most any healthcare environment.

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With an endearing form, Nash adds flare and function to an array of interior settings – especially healthcare environments.Gallery_Nash_7 _ Cropped

Put together with the necessary healthcare fabrics & finishes, the Nash lounge chair radiates beauty.  The curved back and combination of contoured & straight legs makes Nash a wonderful alternative to the typical wall-saver chair.

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REJUVENATION | Kimball – Villa

Villa is a modular lounge collection equipped to support a variety of individual or group activities. It can be arranged in endless configurations or used in freestanding arrangements.  A series of privacy back two-seat lounge pieces create a banquette in a cafe space.Cafe Banquette recolored

Optional full-height SHADE™ privacy divider panels can be positioned in either private or semi private configurations.

The path from patient room to rejuvenation spaces can be quite lengthy. A series of Villa’s single-seat high back lounge chairs, positioned along a main circulation path, provide visitors with a quick touchdown spot in an otherwise busy area.

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Competition within the healthcare market is continuing to grow.  So it is crucial, now more than ever, to design facilities that cater to patients & their family members.  And because no two visitors are alike – facilities are offering a variety of seating solutions to  promote the best possible experience for the greatest number of people. Destinations that provide connection, respite & rejuvenation are yielding the highest overall satisfaction ratings.

For more information, pricing or to schedule a showroom tour, please contact:

dana-7-square-bwDana Marble, Healthcare Account Executive | 262.875.0722

Contact Us

Corporate Office & Showroom:
1711 Paramount Ct., Waukesha, WI  53186
P  262.521.1010

CDI Launches Healthcare Segment; Marble Delivers Industry Expertise



Download Press Release: CDI Launches Healthcare Segment; Dana Marble Delivers Healthcare Industry Expertise to CDI

For more information on Kimball Health or CDI, click on the images below:

kimball-health-by-cdi  Corporate Design Interiors Best Place To Work 2016

To schedule a consultation or discuss a new healthcare project, contact:


Dana Marble | 262.875.0722

For additional information about this or any other Corporate Design Interiors press release, please contact or 262.521.1010.

Industry Insights – Part I

Industry Insights – Healthcare Design

Four designers. Four specialties. One industry.

This summer, Corporate Design Interiors will be giving you some insight into the interior design industry through four very talented designers. Each week, we will be featuring a new designer and specialty. Not only will you have the opportunity to hear about recent trends in various aspects of interior design, but you will also have the opportunity to get to know four distinguished, seasoned designers in the Milwaukee area.

Jessica Dellenbach

Company: Kahler Slater
Favorite Materials: Bringing exterior materials inside or interior materials outside
Favorite Kimball Office piece: Villa is great for creating seating zones. Hum is a great solution for staff collaborative work areas.
Advice to young designers: Ask a million questions. Never accept “no” or “this is how we’ve always done it”. Push the envelope which results in a richer design and better solution.
Interesting Fact: I loved science – biology, nutrition, human anatomy.

Senior Designer at Kahler Slater, Jessica Dellenbach has over 15 years experience in healthcare design. She is one of the leading healthcare designers in the greater Milwaukee area and was named to Milwaukee Business Journals’ “40 under 40” list in 2008.

Tell us a little about your hometown and family?
I grew up in Rockford, IL. I spent lots of time as a child playing with Barbies. I was definitely way more interested in setting up Barbie’s house around my bedroom than I was actually interacting with my Barbies. My mom is very creative with arts/crafts, sewing, and cooking. My dad can fix anything and is very curious about finding creative ways to fix things or make things better. My biggest creative influence was working at a party store where we did everything from balloons for a child’s birthday party or graduation to wedding invitations and wedding reception décor. It was a fun job where I could really see where my creative strengths were.

What was your first job in the industry?
I got an internship with Kahler Slater’s Madison office while I was still in school.

I loved the firm, I loved the people, I loved the opportunities and challenges I had and after 15 years, I still feel the same way.

What led you to go into healthcare design?
As early as my internship, I worked on Healthcare projects. When I was hired full-time, the position I filled was as an Interior Designer on our Healthcare Team. Healthcare design never was the area of expertise I thought I wanted to get into. I thought that all the cool design happened in the Corporate, Retail, or Hospitality design studios. I worked with another designer early on who really showed me that designing for Healthcare enables you to design all of those spaces in one project: Hospitality, Retail, Corporate office, Wellness, Liturgical, and even Higher Education- all in one facility. Changing my view of Healthcare Design has given me a passion for this market segment. I also love that designing Healthcare spaces greatly impacts those who experience the spaces I design. I feel like I can make a difference with the work that I do.

What are the biggest trends you are seeing in healthcare design?  Is one of them your favorite?
Since the introduction of the Affordable Care Act, clients are very focused on higher patient satisfaction scores as that directly relates to hospital reimbursements. More focus is given to creating environments that allow patients and their families to have control over their surroundings, to have choices, and to have a personalization of experience.
There has also been a strong shift to an outpatient wellness focus. I have seen many clients over the past number of years focusing on different models of care, like the medical home. In general, healthcare operational staffing is based more on maximizing efficiency and removing redundancy of work roles. Outpatient spaces need to be more flexible to account for this shift in work flow.

I love the challenge that comes with creating efficient space plans for new outpatient models of care. This inspires new ways of thinking to create the most efficient, cost effective solution that satisfies the new model of care and patient experience.

Additionally, project budgets are much more modest than they were even a few years ago. As a designer, it is fun to create unique design solutions for clients while balancing the practical use of materials for cost effectiveness. It’s motivating to think about how traditional materials can be used in simple creative ways to enhance the experience, without significantly adding cost to already-tight project budgets.

What are some of the most requested furniture pieces you are seeing in your projects?
Products that support flexibility are so critical in design today. Integrating bariatric furniture into all patient spaces, whether that is a Waiting space, Inpatient bedroom, or Consult room is a consistent request. This ensures that the dignity and variety of needs of the patient population are met. Additionally, durable, easy to clean, and intuitive to operate furniture and materials are all important factors too.

How has the millennial generation impacted your design and your client’s needs?
The Millennial generation has a passion for design that is palpable in our design teams. They embrace the newest technology, live and breathe social networking, and are the customers that my clients need to understand and target. They are driven to take design to its purest, most honest form, and I love how that enriches the design teams to come up with something better than we did the day before. Technology is ever-changing and our clients are expecting creative solutions that keep design flexible to accommodate these changes. The Millennial generation, having grown up on technology from a very early age, inherently understands the evolution of technology and helps integrate the flexibility into our design solutions.

How do you stay current and ahead of your competition?
Staying at the forefront of design trends, healthcare reform, and the new ways healthcare is being delivered are definitely differentiators for design firms. Kahler Slater stays ahead of the trends by participating with the Advisory Board, the Center for Health Design, and the Planetree Visionary Design Network, to name just a few. We pay attention to what others are saying, and we also work to add to that knowledge base by writing and speaking. I collaborated with one of our Architectural Designers to deliver a webinar last year on Ambulatory Trends.

Our ability to constantly evolve our approach and delivery of projects for our clients keeps us in the driver seat. Design can always be better and we seek to raise the bar every time for our clients.

If you could design the interior of any healthcare space, what would your dream job/client be?
I would love a client with a clear very lofty vision of designing a Net Zero hospital and the supporting budget that would make this possible. This would be an amazing challenge to design a unique experience with unconventional materials and systems in order to accomplish this goal.

Join us for Industry Insights – Part II when we discuss Corporate Design with a local area designer.