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FGI Balances Virtual and Physical Needs in New Telemedicine Guidance

Formal Interpretations

The 2018 edition of the Guidelines for Design and Construction documents includes new fundamental requirements and related recommendations for designing accommodations for telemedicine services. The article “FGI lays out telemedicine guidelines,” written by Ellen Taylor, PhD, AIA, EDAC, about this new guidance for hospitals and outpatient facilities was published in the May issue of Health Facilities Management®.

Ellen describes how the FGI Health Guidelines Revision Committee (HGRC) took a proactive approach to establishing a glossary definition for telemedicine, evaluating design elements that affect the delivery of telemedicine services, and establishing fundamental requirements for telemedicine spaces along with a robust slate of additional recommendations supported by research and best practices. Design elements such as the space in which telemedicine services would occur, sizing, acoustics, lighting, privacy, and interior surfaces were addressed with a focus on balancing patient experience with clinical need.

Multiple sources were used to develop the requirements and advisory language for telemedicine spaces. The HGRC aimed to recognize the fast-growing need to accommodate health services delivered via telemedicine while allowing flexibility for organizations to determine their own level of need based on services offered.

Ellen is vice-chair of the 2022 HGRC Steering Committee. She is vice president for research at the Center for Health Design. Read the article on the HFM website.