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“What people want is simple: they want to sit in a living room with a friend who happens to be their doctor.” –Dr. Pamela Wible, America’s Leading Voice for Ideal Medical Care

One of the fastest ways to create a patient-centered healthcare space is to take lessons from a home.

Not just any home, your home. 

The space that makes you feel nurtured and safe, wrapped in a blanket with your favorite cuddle buddy by your side.

Your nervous system relaxed and your body ready to receive deep restoration and good loving care.

This same vibe is the one you want to create in your healthcare space mixed with your expertise and professional support.

3 Lessons Your Home Can Teach You About Creating A Patient-Centered Healthcare Space Your Patients And Staff Will LOVE For Life

1) Turn off or remove your overhead fluorescent lighting. It’s icky, a headache inducer and all around plain ugly.

Instead, get creative.

Bring in a snazzy floor lamp, a tabletop light, some plug-in wall sconces and maybe even replace that overhead lighting with a modern ceiling light or dare I say a beautiful chandelier, like the one you might have at home.

This layered type of lighting creates shadows and lights up different areas of your space, tapping into your circadian rhythms, relaxing the muscles in your shoulders and inducing a deep sigh of relief.

If you’re lost on this one, I invite you to check-out my Pinterest board, Lighting for Healing Spaces for inspiration.


2) Invest in some great furniture for your waiting room. 

Here’s the thing: Ikea furniture is a short term solution.

Sorry Ikea, your furniture is not made to last that long and we all know it.

Invest in comfortable and supportive chairs for your waiting room that will last for a good 5+ years.

You know, the kind of chairs you have in your home.

The ones that hug your butt and support your lumbar spine.

A chair that your patient can rest her arms on and sink into after rushing in traffic to arrive to your practice on time.

Need more help in this area? No problem.

Head on over to my Pinterest board, Chairs for Healing Spaces and get inspired.


3) Art. 

So, you know how much you love the artwork in your home and how there’s that personal connection to it—a story or place associated with the image?

Create that in your healthcare space, with a few tweaks.

Here are the tweaks:

1) Don’t use abstract art EVER in your healthcare space.

Evidence has shown it’s not the best choice for patients in pain.

2) Say YES to nature photography. 

Evidence shows that our brains LOVE looking at nature photographs in the same way we LOVE looking at a beautiful sunset or a stream in the forest.

Evidence also has shown that patients with nature photography hung on the walls of their hospital rooms get out of the hospital faster and need less pain medications than those who have no nature photography.

Artwork in your healthcare practice is totally doable and creates a HUGE impact on how your space feels.

You can either DIY this yourself, ask a friend to make some beautiful nature images for you or purchase those high oxytocin-inducing photographs from Evidence-Based Artists like Peter Blanchard.

Here’s one of my favorites of his entitled, Inventing the Future:

Screen Shot 2016-05-14 at 5.23.50 PM

My big message today?

Your home can teach you a lot about how to turn first time visitors to your practice into your patients for life.

This is just the beginning.

Your Biggest Supporter,


Interior Designer Mill Valley, Marin County, San Francisco, CA

P.S. Want to talk about a design project? Read this.