Architects, ADP, and contractor, Logan Construction, have completed a major remodelling of London’s St Thomas’ Hospital – to create a new emergency care pathway in a dedicated emergency floor.
A new clinical decisions unit is the last phase to be finished in a programme that brings together a new ‘Majors’ area, 62 acute assessment ward beds, emergency paediatric services, a children’s short stay unit, and a centralised urgent care centre. The new resuscitation area, with larger treatment cubicles and dedicated trauma and isolation rooms, now sits at the department’s heart.
The emergency department at St Thomas’ sees over 140,000 patients annually, including 27,000 children. ADP says that by co-locating all emergency services in one zone, patients can be directed to the relevant area depending on the severity of their needs. Patients with less serious conditions will be treated by GPs and emergency nurse practitioners.
Artwork funded by Guy’s and St Thomas’ charity and developed with arts consultancy, Art in Site, was implemented to create a welcoming environment, and help patients navigate to the right area. Departments are divided by colour and well-known London landmarks, helping people identify with their surroundings. ADP said: “This was important in humanising clinical environments, which, combined with integrated patient information, makes them more legible to reduce stress and anxiety.”
In the paediatric emergency care department, ADP worked with Art in Site and the user team to integrate cartoon characters and local landmarks created by Japanese artist, Kiriko. ADP explained: “‘Taking the ouch out of A&E’ is designed to communicate to children that they are safe and being cared for, and to distract them during difficult or painful procedures. The graphics also enable them to learn about their body and their illness, and staying healthy and safe.”