By Udita Chaturvedi
Photography: Courtesy V2com
|Graphic Design in the Treatment Room ©Fred Ernst|
Juliana’s Children Hospital in The Hague, Netherlands treads the innovative interactive path to good health, taking the fear out of children and facilitating healthcare design with creative technology and storytelling…
The dull, drab, foreboding environments of heathcare facilities are already on their way out! Adding to the new outlook to design for this sector, Tinker Imagineers embarks on an experimental experiential interior design, where animated characters effectively distract the children from their physical ailments.
|Five Characters ©Tinker Imagineers|
Children visiting this hospital are introduced to five characters or “friends” - Knuf (Hug), Blijf (Happy), Vouw (Fold), C-Bot (Computer-Robot) and Vizzle - who accompany the patients on their journey across the hospital, creating a cheerful environment through interactive features and playful animations on the wall. This ensures that at the onset a child’s attention is instantly drawn away from his aliments and he becomes more receptive to his immediate environs.
Up to 4,000 sq. m. of walls - in corridors, treatment rooms, recovery rooms and labs are covered with colourful graphic wallpapers with the animated characters’ frolicking in ocean, sky and sand. Paired with matching furniture, wall paint and room accessories, the scenario brightens each room, largely de-stressing the little patients.
Toys and installations - such as a ship near the reception, a beach house in the emergency, a lighthouse at the entrance and an aircraft near the cafeteria - further lighten the mood and allow little patients to be preoccupied in a fantasy world, forgetting the extent of their pain and discomfort.
But this happy place is not just for children. The top floor of the hospital, or the Ronald McDonald House, is dedicated to the families of patients. Here too, interactive wallpapers distract the families and provide them a chance to sleep carefree.
The designers, Tinker Imagineers have won several awards and accolades for the project; their most recent - being declared as the ‘Overall Winner of Best Achievement’ among 198 finalists from 41 countries at the Society of British and International Design (SBID) Excellence Awards 2015 in London.
SBID President, Vanessa Brady speaks highly of the project’s “ground-breaking ability to interact with the end user” – a very significant design dictum that has won it the award!