Designing aesthetic medicine
clinics

DESIGNING AESTHETIC MEDICINE CLINICS

Aesthetic medicine is rapidly developing. The architects who start to design aesthetic medicine clinics try to reflect this dynamics, recognizing that the needs of patients are equally dynamic. In some respects, these designs certainly break the conventions and are clearly different from the designs of doctor’s offices. On the other hand – until recently, aesthetic medicine clinics were treated by legal regulations similar to hairdressing and cosmetics salons in terms of the quality of designs, so the issue was not approached as rigorously as in the case of designing medical offices. However, due to the fact that the regulation, which introduced these rules, ceased to apply, currently there is no uniform text in the Polish law that would formalize it. However, the Sanitary Inspectorate and investors still take non-functional regulations as a starting point, and in the opinion of architects, this is a good solution, because they were substantive and precise.


DIVISION OF PREMISES INTO ROOMS

Aesthetic medicine clinics consist not only of service rooms. The proper functioning of the aesthetic medicine clinic depends largely on the auxiliary rooms, which must be properly designed to fulfill their task. In the most general outline, at least the following rooms must be created:


Separate service room

Separate service room (aesthetic medicine clinic, also known as a treatment room, which is perhaps not very precise, but is often used). This is a basic, but not the most representative room in the entire facility. It must be primarily designed to keep sterile purity;



Cloakroom and waiting room

Cloakroom room and waiting room. They do not have to be separate rooms - it is enough to have a special zone in the waiting room where patients could leave their outer clothing. However, if it is also planned to carry out longer treatments, after which the patient will have to rest a little, then it is worth to allocate a separate room for cloakroom or leave a place where the patient could put some of the clothes in the relaxation area;



Hygienic and sanitary room

A hygienic and sanitary room (toilet) for patients and staff. For practical reasons, at least two independent toilets are very often created, but even more often, where possible, investors insist on creating at least two toilets for patients – separate for ladies and men;



A place to store cleaning products

A place to store cleaning products. It does not have to be a large room, but it should be architecturally separated and normally closed to prevent from accidental taking of the cleaning products. In this ``storeroom``, manual or automatic cleaning equipment can also be stored;



A place for storing cosmetic preparations

A place for storing cosmetic preparations. Depending on the specificity of the stored products, appropriate thermal conditions and humidity should be ensured, hence it is recommended that such a place should be architecturally separated. Usually it is a small storeroom or warehouse with a small area. Part of medications and cosmetics may be stored in the main office zone, provided, however, that they are regularly used and stored in a way that prevents mistakes when taking the preparation;



Waste storage space

Waste storage space. Its architectural separation is important for sanitary reasons, but in the case of storage of medical waste, there are certain restrictions associated with the storage of biological and potentially contaminated material. Here, separate regulations provide information on how to secure such material, but a separate, lockable room is absolutely necessary;


EQUIPMENT REQUIRED IN A DESIGN OF EACH AESTHETIC MEDICAL CLINIC

A good clinic design must provide the place for many different devices, appliances and furniture. However, while the furniture set can be composed quite arbitrarily, the basic equipment is imposed by the regulations, and its installation may involve the necessity of dedicating additional rooms for this purpose.

  • Washbasins – in the designs of aesthetic medicine clinics they are always located in the treatment room. This is demanded by the Sanitary Inspectorate, if the treatments are carried out without applying foreign substances to the patient’s body. However, if such contamination occurs, then a bathroom with shower should be separated. At this stage, the design must also take into account the accessibility of the communication route between the service room and the bathroom.
  • Sterilization devices – sterilization is required for all reusable tools that are used during treatments carried out with the tearing of the tissues, and there are quite many of them. To be able to clean and disinfect the tools safely and comfortably, a small room is often created with a sink, autoclaves and accessories for storing and preparing sterilized tools. In general, the design must include: a steam sterilizer (autoclave), a table top for contaminated materials with a container for disinfectant, a table top for clean products, a table top for equipment before sterilization, a table top for sterile materials, a disinfector and a sink.

WHAT IS NOT VISIBLE ON THE DESIGN

Designing aesthetic medicine clinics requires the compliance with the requirements of the treatment rooms (according to the definition, these are all offices where treatments are carried out with the tearing of the tissues). According to the relevant regulations, one of the most important elements of equipment in such a clinic is an efficient ventilation system. In modern designs of aesthetic medicine clinics, a lot of time is devoted to this issue, because ventilation systems can be only plastered-in or placed in an enclosed system, which may hinder their adaptation to housing conditions. Ensuring adequate efficiency with the aesthetic arrangement of ventilation grilles is only seemingly simple – in practice, far-reaching modifications of existing designs and installations in the premises are often necessary.


LIGHT AND COLOR IN THE AESTHETIC MEDICINE CLINIC

The role of light is very important – correct installation of properly configured light points provides the opportunity to accurately diagnose and relatively easily perform aesthetic medicine treatments. In addition, light also has a decisive role in the process of shaping the patient’s attitude. For this reason, if possible, natural light is dominant. However, when its intensity is insufficient, additional artificial lighting is used. The key here is the color temperature, because if it is improperly selected, it hampers the identification of skin lesions or the safe operation of medical tools. For the same reason, the reliability of the entire installation is important, which also complicates the design of the aesthetic medicine clinics, as it requires installation of more expensive control components, and often also a power system. Light is an important decorative factor – if it is reasonably used, it can change the character of any interior. The condition, however, is the special arrangement of light points and skilful operation of the color temperature. As a result, the light gains the ability to deepen the finish colors and add contrast and depth. This is important because most aesthetic medicine clinics are designed in such a way as to emphasize the hygienic cleanliness of the interior. Because of this, the dominant color is often raw and cold white, which is not necessarily an ideal solution from the point of view of color psychology. Operating with light and adding color accents enables to change this image to a more favorable one.


AS MANY ARCHITECTS, AS MANY IDEAS

It can not be said that in the case of aesthetic medicine clinics there are no standards regulating their design. One can, of course, accuse the legislator that he has not done anything for a few years to systematize and structure these standards, but a skilled interior designer knows the rules and unwritten principles for the design of aesthetic medicine clinics. Even if they result from non-binding legal acts, they are used to create better designs. Each arrangement is, however, largely individual – it must reflect the investor’s vision and marketing concept, but it must also meet basic functional requirements. In practice, the combination of these two sets of requirements can be very complicated, which is why, although some common features can be visible in designs, the arrangements of aesthetic medicine clinics are really very diverse. Practice proves that this diversity is not a measure of quality. Every year, the Sanitary Inspectorate questions several dozen designs and arrangements, and very often the main reasons for criticism are basic technical errors. This proves that nowadays the architects, who do not have too much idea about this specific issue, too often deal with designing aesthetic medicine clinics.


FUNCTIONALITY PRIOR TO AESTHETICS

Aesthetics is a showcase and an element of marketing strategy. It can also become a visual presentation of the idea of ​​the clinic, or even an extension of the vision of a doctor who works in it. The design of the interior of the aesthetic medicine clinic is not just a visual art or an opportunity to demonstrate the latest trends. The basic requirement when designing aesthetic medicine clinics is to preserve their highest functionality also in those areas that have not been legally regulated. The interior should be clean, safe, comfortable and ergonomic, and at the same time visually attractive – never the other way round, because a nice but non-functional clinic will not impress the doctors or their patients.

See also: Designing therapy offices