The Palomar Medical Center near San Diego recently spent $1 billion on a new hospital. But this health system, equipped with some of the most advanced technology in the world and designed to feel more like a hotel than a hospital, is an outlier among U.S. health facilities. While a handful of systems are planning new structures, most hospital construction projects are upgrades or additions. And a survey conducted late last year showed how the Affordable Care Act and the uncertain future of the traditional hospital has organizations holding on to their pocketbooks.
Who can blame them? When an architect says hospitals are passé, the writing is on the wall. David Grandy with HDR, a leading global healthcare design firm, says we shouldn’t want hospitals to be the focus of our healthcare system. The emphasis should be on health.