‘Why I hate the sterile design of hospital exam rooms’

Mar 26, 2019
The aptly named 'Wellness Centre' made Carole feel anything but well. Source: Getty Images

The room is painted khaki green. It has no windows. Two small hard-backed chairs are propped against one wall inviting no one to sit, but there is no where else — unless you want to use the step stool. An awkwardly climb up on the examination table, covered with paper that crumples and rips as you move, your legs dangling clumsily over the edge.

There are no pictures or magazines, nothing to distract you from the silence. It allows you to hear your heart beating, feel the dryness in your mouth, taste the anxiety.

Steel, chrome, and enamel adorn the small room. Machines stand waiting, occasionally blinking like broken traffic lights, or making strange clicking sounds.

You mind swirls with questions and fantasises about answers. The best possible scenario… and the worst.

So you wait. How coincidental that they should call this building The Wellness Centre.

Isn’t that the problem? How many rooms in this world are designed by people who never have to sit in them? Have never even met or talked to anyone who has? Perhaps we need to find new designers.

How do you feel having to visit the doctor? What do you think could be done better to make exam rooms more appealing to patients?

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