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Consultative Design as an Approach Towards Socially Sustainable Residential Aged Care

9 pagesPublished: October 23, 2017


Currently residential aged care (RAC) provides a solution to address ageing populations in many developed countries. Demand for RAC is predicted to increase as populations continue to age with the recurrent costs posing an increasing burden on society. The contribution the built environment can play to mitigate this potential burden is becoming increasingly important in the design and construction of RAC facilities. The theories of environmental psychology rationalise the relationship between the physical environment and the individual and impacts work stress/satisfaction. Work stress/satisfaction in RAC facilities has a direct influence on quality of care and can directly affect the residents’ quality of life. This paper reports on a two stage study of design influences with the potential to impact upon the care team’s work stress/satisfaction in RAC where the benefits of consultative design are indentified. When compared to other facilities in the study the facility utilising a consultative design approach demonstrated more positive and less negative results for the design influences included. The consultative design approach reduced the potential for designers to copy and adapt a previous design, afforded universal ownership of the facility and optimised the building’s impact on work stress/satisfaction. The approach formed the basis of an overarching process to ensure the necessary elements of the design influences framework can be appropriately incorporated into the built environment.

Keyphrases: consultative, Design, residential aged care

In: Marsha Lamb (editor). AUBEA 2017: Australasian Universities Building Education Association Conference 2017, vol 1, pages 244--252

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