Our team collaborating in efforts to enhance our patient experience when the new cancer center opens.

The team collaborating in efforts to enhance patient experience when the new cancer center opens.

Over 200 individuals within twenty different committees worked tirelessly to research, advice and plan the new outpatient clinic spaces. The multidisciplinary group was led by subject matter experts—clinicians considered experts in their field due to their experience working in certain areas of the hospital such as intensive care, radiology, pharmacy, etc. Committee members included technicians, nurses, advanced practice providers, pharmacists and physicians.

Select committee members toured local hospitals and leading cancer centers around the country to collect the best workplace designs and practices. Mock-up rooms were also developed to gather additional feedback. All gathered insight, information and experience was brought to committee meetings for discussion and to form the decisions made regarding the design of the new cancer center clinics.

The design process also included the input of the Patient Family Advisory Council, a group comprised of cancer patients, survivors and caregivers who act as a sounding board for the oncology program.

“Every oncology nurse had an opportunity to weigh in on the physical space during the design and planning stages,” says Katie Gross, case manager, Geriatrics, and a subject matter expert for the Design and Build Committee for the Fred & Pamela Buffett Cancer Center. “The goal was to ensure we developed a very functional and comfortable space for our patients and for our clinicians that would be state-of-the-art and provide the best work flow.”

“The process was very work-driven,” says Theresa Woodrum, nurse manager, Oncology Hematology Special Care Unit, a subject matter expert for the Medical Surgical Build and Design Committee. “We looked closely at placement of everything from equipment to computers, beds, booms in the unit that would promote the best workflow, allow for good visualization of patients from hallways and provide better amenities for patients and their families. Having our nurses involved in the design was critical to the design’s success. No one knows better than them how to maximize the workflow.”

Committees reviewed the feedback and determined which ideas would be implemented.

“The goal is to have a state-of-the-art facility that will meet the needs of both our patients and clinicians,” says Chad Himmelberg, associate nurse manager, Surgical Intensive Care Unit and Medical Intensive Care Unit, and a subject matter expert for the Critical Care Build and Design Committee.