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Remember last year when I wrote about that leg stirrups and lighting conversation I had with my Gynecologist while I was on the exam table with my feet in stirrups getting my PAP?

Yeah, that one.

Today I want to revisit the OBGYN exam room again.

This time from a patient-centered design perspective on how to make this experience for ALL women, not just better, but AWESOME.

Here are the facts:

According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, 8 million women in the United States skip screenings for cervical cancer caused by the HPV virus or (human papillomavirus).

That means 8 million of our sisters, mothers and daughters skip the PAP which is one of the most powerful tools to detect and cure HPV … and save lives.

In fact, the CDC’s deputy director, Lleana Arias has said, “No woman should die from cervical cancer.”

Surveys revealed that most women didn’t have medical insurance or easy access to a Gynecologist.

Personally, I think there’s another reason…

We (women) can ALL relate to how deeply unpleasant it is to get our check-ups and that sterile, industrial aesthetic with white walls, hard surfaces and glaring lights is enough to scare us away and never want to come back again, right?

But… what if… women actually looked forward to going to the Gynecologist’s office?

Not for the procedure itself; that’s never fun.

But… what if the experience while there created such a pleasurable feeling of nurturing, support, safety and deep rest?

Here’s my latest design concept for an OBGYN’s exam room:

(A. Entrance to the room)

(B. View into the room)


Here are 10 design details of the above OBGYN exam room:

  1. It’s 150 square feet–the standard size of an OBGYN’s exam room.
  2. The exam table is upholstered with soft commercial–grade fabric and easy to sanitize.
  3. The exam table does not have leg stirrups, thank you very much.
  4. The exam table is nicely tucked in a corner where the patient can feel safe and it is not the first thing seen upon entering the room. Yay!
  5. The lighting in the room is layered to create a cozy vibe and there are specialty task lights like the LED surgery light for exams and spot lights under the overhead storage cabinet.
  6. There are two comfortable upholstered chairs for women of all shapes and sizes to sip tea or read a magazine while waiting for the doc and for having important conversations with the nurse, doctor, their BFF or family member who might be with them during the appointment.
  7. The walls are painted a warm white. The ceiling is a nice shade of Benjamin Moore’s Amorous so when patients are on the table, they can look up at the ceiling and instantly feel comforted by a beautiful color… and a red chandelier.
  8. Lovely modern cabinets have been chosen over the standard ugly medicine cabinets seen in medical offices across the country. Believe it or not, the cost is about the same.
  9. Artwork on walls has been carefully chosen to elicit feelings of love and well-being and strategically placed to ensure good energy flow in this windowless room. What an upgrade from looking at the traditional medical charts normally hung on the walls, right?

And finally #10: What female Gynecologist wouldn’t love a pink swivel stool, right?

So tell me, What’s your favorite design element of the room?

And… Does it inspire any ideas for you to add to your existing practice?

Get the help you need now to start DIY designing the healing space of your dreams. Yours in Heart and Health,