Shortland Health is a GP clinic in Auckland’s CBD, which, while a small project in size, explores a number of exciting ideas.
The client for the project, Omni Health, partnered with the international organisation Sanford World Clinics to deliver modern and forward-thinking health facilities worldwide. Shortland Health is the first such project in Australasia. Adopting the principals of ‘concierge’ or subscription-based healthcare, and locating the new practice for ultimate convenience in the CBD, Omni Health seeks to appeal to city workers with on-demand healthcare they can access easily through their working day. This subscription-based model allows doctors to take on fewer patients and encourages more frequent visits, resulting in richer relationships and improved longer-terms health outcomes. This offers a template for future primary healthcare in New Zealand.
Following this model, the design provides a very different experience to the average doctor’s visit, regularly challenging any preconceptions of GP clinics.
Rather than a waiting room, patients, or ‘clients’, pass the entry’s bold neon signage and arrive in the lounge, to be greeted by concierge staff and offered refreshment. Dominated by the brass-topped leaner and backed by a lush green wall, this social, calming space allows patients to relax, relieving stress and reducing anxiety.
The calming, comfortable design continues into the clinic and specialist patient rooms, with curving timber walls and sculptural arches, along with soft furnishings. In another change to convention, clinic rooms are configured to be the patients’ domain; furniture is arranged to encourage relaxed conversation between patient and doctor, and medical staff are mobile, meaning no cluttered desks or pressure for patients to leave.
Shortland Health provides all the technical requirements of a clinical environment, includes GP, physiotherapy and specialist consultation services, and is Cornerstone accredited. Adjacent to the lounge, the onsite pharmacy conveniently fills subscriptions. Other facilities include lab tests, medical utilities, staff lounge and write-up space, and amenity for staff to look after their own wellbeing through a busy day.
The project was a central focus of Klein Architects' ‘wellness in design’ philosophy, which seeks to create environments for people to thrive, not just survive. By actively addressing the impact of the built environment on an individual’s health, both mental and physical, we look to transform health spaces into healthy spaces. This is a small distinction to make, but we believe recognising the difference is vital in improving the health outcomes in all our projects.