It’s no secret that healthcare workers spend long days in stressful environments. They are disproportionately susceptible to workplace injuries and burnout. But as in any industry, healthcare is the safest and most efficient with the proper tools. In clinical spaces, which tend to be high-volume and fast-paced, that is perhaps even more important.
Healthcare facilities need not only the right tools but also person-centered design that prioritizes usability. When nurses and caregivers can perform their jobs comfortably, they’re often more efficient — and vice versa. That’s why clinical spaces and their furniture must be human-friendly: the perfect blend of form and function.
Here’s how ergonomic, innovative healthcare furniture design can improve employee satisfaction and safety.
Modular, Mobile-First Design
Healthcare workers stand and move around nearly constantly. Thus, their work environment should be designed to follow their function.
For example, mobile workstations have risen in popularity. These versatile fixtures are designed with ergonomic needs in mind. They’re an ideal complement to multi-purpose, adaptable care spaces. Healthcare workers can reduce the back-and-forth between key amenities. That helps minimize musculoskeletal stress for staff who spend almost their entire shifts on their feet.
Plus, a modular approach helps healthcare workers focus on patient care. Rather than shoehorning tasks or procedures into an ill-fitting space, the room adapts to each patient’s unique needs. As some equipment is immutable, it really comes down to design. Healthcare spaces must be oriented to human needs, rather than the other way around.
This approach indirectly supports healthcare workers’ job satisfaction by enabling better communication and collaboration. Naturally, a more cohesive work environment leads to greater employee satisfaction. That’s much easier to attain with modular design and multi-purpose medical furniture.
Too often, workplace furniture is designed solely for form or function. It’s either meant to look nice for visitors, or it’s completely geared toward the task at hand.
Ergonomics is the science of worker efficiency and safety. When applied to the physical aspects of a work environment, it helps close the gap between form and function. Everything from chairs to desks to computer stations must be designed to minimize strain and maximize productivity.
By reducing stress and improving comfort, ergonomic design increases employee satisfaction. Research has indicated that workers in any industry are happier when their task furniture and the overall environment prioritize their ability to work safely.
That’s especially important in healthcare spaces, where workers must move around constantly, fill out detailed charts, carry heavy equipment, and even lift and transfer patients. With so many repetitive tasks, there is high potential for musculoskeletal stress. Therefore, ergonomic design is crucial to their overall safety and efficiency. And when healthcare workers feel less strain during their daily tasks, they’re much more likely to feel satisfied.
Patient Seating Solutions
While healthcare workers are on their feet most of the day, patients are usually seated or lying down. That instantly creates a level difference in which caregivers must bend or stoop to perform certain tasks. The furniture itself may present an obstacle. For example, it’s more difficult to draw blood or place an IV if patients are partially blocked by rigid armrests or side tables.
Another problem is a lack of patient independence. The less that patients can do for themselves, the more that nursing staff must do for them. When that includes mundane tasks such as handing them mobile devices or adjusting their recliner position, healthcare workers become even more overworked.
Innovative patient seating solutions promote patient independence. This helps patients stay more comfortable while reducing the demand on healthcare workers. Modern medical recliners allow patients to adjust their body position, keep water close by, and even charge their phones — all without needing to push a call button. For example, Champion’s Augustine recliner has an infinitely adjustable backrest, plus options for a pivoting side table and accessory hook.
Champion Supports Healthier, Happier Workplaces
Especially in the high-stress healthcare industry, employee satisfaction depends on workplace efficiency. The safer and more comfortable the staff feels, the better. As part of the shift toward person-centered healthcare design, clinical spaces are increasingly geared toward both caregivers’ and patients’ needs.
Champion designs its healthcare furniture to be both versatile and human-friendly. Thanks to its ergonomic and convenient features, Champion has developed medical seating solutions for a wide range of clinical uses. Browse our collections now.