Pulse Design Group

Healthcare Panelists: Disruptors include tech, politics and consumer-centric market

Several disruptive trends could provide headwinds to the typically stable healthcare development market over the next two years, including insurance industry uncertainty, shifting political power, ongoing consumer demand for mobile connectivity, and a move to patient-centric drivers in service delivery.

Panelists offered insight into those trends and more at MetroWire Media’s 2018 Healthcare Summit on June 26 at Blue Hills Country Club. Moderated by Dan LacyMcCownGordon Construction vice president of operations, here’s a snapshot of comments:

“The landscape for healthcare in general is the most dynamic it has ever been in KC. If you look from Holmes Road along I-435 to Metcalf Avenue, you’ve had 450,000 square feet of new construction occur. So that corridor and that visibility takes on a rank-and-file in commercial real estate that we have never seen before-- to the delight of investors, to the delight of institutional owners and to the delight of real estate developers.” -Suzanne Dimmel, Senior Vice President, Cushman & Wakefield

“Getting patient care close to home is obviously a big factor, and you also have the search for getting market share, so bringing patients back to the 'mothership' hospitals-- whether it’s tertiary care or regional hospitals-- you see providers really trying to gather that market share.”    -Mitch Hoefer, Founding Principal, Hoefer Wysocki

“We are building critical care clinics that are non-traditional in a sense because they are owned by the insurance companies themselves. They are eliminating the middle man to keep costs down, and we are seeing this all over the country.” -Kevin Rogers, CEO, United Excel

“I think you will see growth in outpatient recovery and sending people home with medical equipment that is connected back to the ‘mothership,’ so patients don’t have to recover for the entire time in the hospital. That could actually reduce the numbers of beds.” -Rick Embers, Principal, Pulse Design Group

“We are looking at flexibility in how we design wireless networks because everyone wants to get on the network with their iPad or phone while sitting there and waiting, but that has to be separate and secured different than the patient network. There’s a huge push there as well as a push to get equipment connected from wireless spaces.” -Jeremy Bechtold, Vice President- Facilities, Construction & Real Estate, Saint Luke’s Health System

“When you’re talking about qualifications and procurement from a design-build standpoint, the process gets a lot more streamlined. The goal of design-build is that we’re all looking for better outcomes, so the goal is to provide that in collaborative manner with teams so they can get engaged with the users.” -Matt Miller, Project Executive, Turner Construction

“Tight construction timelines and speed-to-market pressure means contractors need to custom order product with plenty of lead time… as far as disrupters (to the industry), I think it’s going to be the consumer experience of health care, the demand for convenience and the demand for value.” -Meghan Dudek, Principal, Benson Method

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Teamwork and expertise prove good medicine for SMMC project timeline

Shawnee Mission Medical Center has opened the city’s largest hybrid operating room, a fast-tracked project that converted an outdated clinical area into a 3,550-square foot surgical space equipped with the latest advanced imaging equipment and technology.

Built by general contractor United Excel and designed by health care architecture firm Pulse Design Group, the new multidisciplinary operating room allows health care professionals from different specialties to treat patients undergoing minimally-invasive heart and vascular surgeries in the same location. Procedures will include Transcatheter Aortic Valve Replacements (TAVR), electrophysiology, vascular procedures and cardiac catheterization.

Most of the construction took place after normal business hours to meet an expedited project timeline and to minimize disruptions to patients and ongoing operations. It was a challenge that United Excel was prepared to meet.

“It’s so different from building a big box store or standalone construction because there are birthing mothers and even NICU patients right next to us.” said United Excel Project Manager Lucy Campbell. “Adjacent areas remained active during hospital hours and during off hours. If someone was admitted for an emergency surgery, we had to stop what we were doing but still maintain the construction schedule.”

United Excel built a shell around the construction space to limit harmful fumes, dust, vibration and noise. Once the hybrid OR was completed and equipment installed within the shell, crews performed a thorough terminal cleaning to ensure the space was 100 percent sterile.

“We built a whole room around the space in which we were going to be working, so you are building twice, basically,” said United Excel President Dennis Burns. “Those in health care construction understand how important infection control is. If you don’t do health care construction, then you may not be aware of how important that piece is.”

Architectural details included a flexible floor plan that was developed and vetted by nurses and physicians with the aid of virtual reality, custom solid surface casework provided by Shield, and an elevated control desk for optimal patient viewing. The advanced room design allows for a patient to transition from an interventional catheter-based procedure to a surgical procedure without being transported to another setting.

“Our firm has designed hybrid operating rooms for numerous clients, but the new hybrid operating room at Shawnee Mission Medical Center is by far the most spacious and technologically advanced. It sets the highest standards for future hybrid operating rooms,” said Pulse Design Group Principal Rick Embers.

Greg Highbarger, SMH design and construction manager, agreed that the complexities of the hybrid operating room project-- including a September-to-January timeline-- provided challenges.

“...the synergy of our design and construction partners defused any concerns that our project would not be completed on time and under budget,” Highbarger said in a release. “The success of our new state-of-the-art hybrid operating room is a testament to having the right expertise at each phase of the project.”

The project team included: Professional Engineering Consultants (PEC), P1 Group, Capital Electric, Allied Construction Services, Shield Casework, and Jayhawk Fire Sprinkler Co. Medical equipment was provided by Steris, Phillips, Biosense Webster, GE, Drager, Siemens, & Sorin.

United Excel built an actual infection control barrier during construction of Shawnee Mission Medical Center's Hybrid OR. The wall blends visually into the adjacent hallway.

United Excel built an actual infection control barrier during construction of Shawnee Mission Medical Center's Hybrid OR. The wall blends visually into the adjacent hallway.

Panelist Spotlight: Rick Embers of Pulse Design Group

Panelist Spotlight:  Rick Embers of Pulse Design Group

Rick Embers is a senior principal at Pulse Design Group and a featured panelist at our upcoming Healthcare Summit. Because Embers' firm is known for leading the pack in architectural healthcare technology services, we wanted to get the story behind the story on their success with virtual reality modeling.

Pulse Design Group pioneers virtual reality in healthcare architecture

Pulse Design Group pioneers virtual reality in healthcare architecture

The new and exciting industry of virtual reality is proving to hold tremendous potential for the future of entertainment, design, and the unthinkable. Here in Kansas City, a local architecture firm is pioneering the technology, becoming the first business in the area to take the tool to new heights.