Creating healthy environments hospitals - lighting for staff performance and patient well being

Name of Researcher: M. (Mariëlle) P.J. Aarts

Supervisors:  Prof. dr. Helianthe Kort, Prof . dr. ir. Evert van Loenen, Prof.Dr.-Ing. habil. Alexander Rosemann
Chair research belongs to: Building Performance and Building Lighting
Strategic area: Health
Envisaged research period: 2016-2020

Currently, an investigation on the healthcare system and its possible evolution to achieve sustainability in terms of costs, availability, and outcomes is ongoing. The formation of healing environments in hospitals has risen up in the agenda. According to recent research findings, occupants’ health and wellbeing are affected by the building aspects. Nevertheless, limited evidence was found by previous studies on the impact of lighting on people and their performance. Lighting conditions affect human health in two ways: the visual system and the non – visual system.

Problem Statement
Studies have shown that there is a correlation between staff satisfaction and patients’ satisfaction. The traditional design of healthcare facilities does not emphasize on staff needs and performance, which may conflict with patients’ satisfaction. As people age, they need more light. The aging workforce escalates the aforementioned problem.  As a result, the working environment can be turned into an unfriendly place and the care provided to patients can be of low-grade quality.

The aim of this study is to establish/research the relation between lighting conditions and users’ performance and satisfaction, and to propose recommendations regarding the lighting design of hospitals.
In order to observe how the hospitals are currently used, analyse and gain insight into the impact of lighting on staff performance. To conduct field tests with the implementation of novel lighting technologies two case studies will be used. The healthcare centres involved will be the Meander Medical Centre in Amersfoort and the Jeroen Bosch Hospital in ‘s-Hertogenbosch. Both hospitals are following the healing environment principles.