Monday, November 2, 2009

Decorating a Pediatrician’s Office

The pediatrician’s office space is unique because it needs to serve a lot of purposes. The nature of the business is to take care of sick children, but you will also need an appropriate space to meet with adult parents. Additionally, this is a place of business where people will be working. Creating the right environment takes a little strategic planning.

Safety is the number one concern. Remember that you will have small children and babies all over the office. This means that all electrical outlets need safety covers. You should probably opt for outlet plates that automatically cover the openings when something is not plugged in. You will also need to make sure that there are no choking hazards, hanging cords, or wires around the office. Your hot water heater should be set to no more than one hundred twenty degrees to avoid burns.

Functionality is also important. You need furniture that is accommodating to parents carrying children. Chairs without arms may be a good idea so that sick children can lie down while they wait. You will need plenty of space for things that entertain children, like preschool toys or an activity table, while leaving walkways clear.

The theme of the decoration should reflect your personality. If you like to scuba dive, consider an aquatic theme. Mobiles and interesting artwork hold children’s attention while they wait to be seen. Murals or wall decals are great, too. Mirrors are interesting to children; just make sure that they are unbreakable childproof mirrors if they are within a child’s reach.

Entertainment is important in your waiting room and exam rooms. Books for children and magazines for parents are good to have in both places. An activity table provides fun entertainment for children waiting to be seen. Children’s rugs and other preschool toys or learning toys are wonderful to have. Keep in mind that you will need to have the toys periodically sterilized throughout the day, so most pediatrician’s offer only a couple of items that are easily sterilized.

Comfort is an issue for parents, especially if they have other children with them. It’s a good idea to have a bench seat in your exam room instead of just one chair. If possible, section off one corner of your waiting room for nursing mothers. A curtain or partition will keep this area private. Make sure that you put up a sign that asks people other than nursing mothers to please keep this area clear.

Decorating the office can be a lot of fun. Besides an activity table in each area, you may want to put in a fish tank or magnetic wall with gears and letters to play with. Making it interesting will keep children entertained and parents happy.

About the Author: Jim Ford is the President of KinderMark, a family owned and managed business which sells waiting room toys and waiting room furniture used in doctor’s offices, hospitals, auto dealers, dentists offices and libraries. Preschool toys such as an activity table and learning toys are favorites for pediatric offices. For more information, visit www.kindermark.com.

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2 Comments:

Blogger jsimpson said...

Design of healthcare facilities can be a challenge, especially a pediatrician's office. Furniture and finishes must work for both well and sick children as both are in the office at the same time.....but, design of spaces used specifically by children can be great fun! Cheery colors and exciting activity areas might just bring a smile to the sick, relieving both parent and child for a while.

Thanks for the article!
Jeanette Simpson, ASID
KidSpaceInteriors.com

November 3, 2009 2:24 PM  
Blogger Rick said...

How about keeping the waiting room in order? Here is a toy cabinet that keeps the the other toys until the child puts one back. Check out this video.

February 1, 2010 10:25 AM  

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