The “design diagnosis” By Design’s challenge was to take a former convention center in the heart of a Framingham and convert it to a state-of-the-art medical center that would house four physicians and a rotating group of visiting doctors.  Where business people once heard talks of increased sales figures, patients would now receive stress tests, echocardiograms and an array of diagnostic testing, all aimed at improving the quality of life rather than increasing the bottom line.

The building needed an efficient design to accommodate internal medicine, cardiology and pulmonary services – as well as a laboratory and two procedure rooms.

Converting existing facilities is becoming a popular alternative to beginning anew for physicians and office managers who appreciate the advantages of location, cost and turnaround time.

Guidelines for this 4,000 square foot project were to maximize the clinical space and establish an efficient flow of patient traffic.

An RX for efficiency  All phases of the project – find the building, overseeing the construction, and choosing the wallpaper and furniture – were completed by By Design Healthcare Interiors.

The company begins with the establishment of a development team, consisting of architects, contractors , and real estate experts – as well as the medical facilities’ physicians, administrators and hospital managers.  Encouraging input from all parties involved assures consistent communication as the project progresses.

That is followed by a survey of site areas,  Survey components may include maps of competitors’ sites, traffic analyses, photos of the sites, lease specifics and “buildability” reports.

In planning the facility, all staff members, physicians and the design team met weekly to see that the construction moved smoothly. Details such as constructing a “pass through” window between the bathroom and laboratory, or adding a baby changing station, we types of topics that shaped the final look of the facilities.

A prescription for innovation  One unique amenity to the Charles River Medical Associates facility in Framingham is the addition of a patient education, library-fashion room.  References are available for patients to peruse reading materials relevant to their particular needs.  This includes information on medical topics including cancer, diabetes, arthritis, and cardiovascular problems.  Patients can review materials in privacy prior to or following a consultation with the doctor.

“We struggled for over a year to find a site.  By Design stepped in and within weeks they found an appropriate location.  ADA access and ample parking were a real plus.  They helped us to see beyond the existing structure and guided us through the transformation to a model medical office.  Unlike other real estate people, By Design was able to evaluate the site with an eye toward our medical needs.” – Chris Moorse, Assistant Director; West Regional Service, Charles River Medical Associates