Virtual Reality used as part of hospital designs

A hospital set to open by the end of this year used virtual reality to involve its staff in the design process.

Hospital Nova in central Finland will be the first to have been built in the district in the last 40 years, with BIM also playing a key part in the facility’s creation.

“Our objective was to engage hospital staff in the project before construction had even started, by allowing them to visit the building virtually,” said project director, Mikko Jylhä.

“Right from the early stages we wanted to share the new designs, collaborate with the building’s future users and gather vital feedback for the design process.” 

Gathering feedback from so many different groups who would be using the building was invaluable in helping shape its design

VR was implemented via a demonstration space next to the construction site, where both staff and the general public could visit and immerse themselves in a virtual experience of the hospital.

This proved to be an idea that sparked a huge level of engagement, with more than 350 people signing up to be involved in the design process and in 2019, more than 3000 people visited the virtual exhibition.

By using the VR space to explore the designs for the hospital, staff have been able to provide feedback on the project as they’ve been able to understand the amount of space that had been planned for certain functions.

“Many different staff groups were involved, ranging from clinical staff, consultants, doctors, nurses and laboratory staff,” Jylhä said.

“Gathering feedback from so many different groups who would be using the building was invaluable in helping shape its design. Changes were made to the architect plans based on feedback. The result being an improved hospital which avoids any expensive alterations once the hospital is complete.”

The construction of the hospital in now in its final stages with an official planned for the end of 2020.

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