Innovation in healthcare
Zuyderland is the (regional) hospital for South Limburg and has a range of specialisations. In addition, Zuyderland functions as a training hospital for medical staff. So it is no surprise that Zuyderland likes to take a leading role with regard to innovations in healthcare. This happens at several levels. Dirk Larue of Zuyderland says: ″We bring together suppliers, healthcare providers, specialists and patients in our Innovation Lab, and we brainstorm about innovative use of smart and e-health. For example, we research and test applications such as smart plasters for monitoring at home, Virtual Reality, 3D printing and the use of smartwatches. Currently, our focus is on applications for chronic diseases and remote treatment or aftercare.″
In cooperation with specialists
Smart and e-health applications are not the only things that improve the standard of care at Zuyderland. The hospital also observes innovations in architecture and design that improve our (provision of) care. The segregation of the flow of visitors/patients, professionals, and goods is just one improvement. However, according to John Claessens, Account Manager and dedicated contact for Zuyderland, further developments in furniture design also lead to innovations in care. ″We developed a special front desk workstation for which the table top needed to tilt at least 15 degrees. To achieve this, our Ahrend designers have been collaborating closely with the Zuyderland specialists.″
‘Ahrend helps us to achieve our goals and to shape our vision.’
Co-creation and circularity
The armchairs in the Hip and Knee Centre, used by orthopaedists when they make a treatment plan together with their patients, are another co-creation between Zuyderland and Ahrend. John: ″We call for everyone's expertise and complement each other. This is how we safeguard Zuyderland's ambitions for sustainable procurement, reuse of furniture and circularity.″ Dirk Larue: ″For example, Ahrend's Circular Hub recently refurbished 190 Thonet conference chairs for Zuyderland. We used to discard and replace. Now we focus, very consciously, on refurbishment. In this way we can reduce CO2 emissions together and we reduce the huge amount of waste. Both parties like this way of working and we want to expand this together.
For this customer, Ahrend is significantly more than just an interior supplier. In addition to Project Manager and Circular Partner, John almost feels like an employee of Zuyderland. He has the freedom to develop initiatives. John: ″For example, Ahrend has made a tailored webshop for standard products. This is where departments can place direct orders for a workspace or conference chair, and much more. We are a collaborative partner and we propose solutions based on needs. We can assess those needs really well, because we know our way around and are entrusted to operate as an extension of the Facilities Department. As a partner, it is great that we can relieve Zuyderland of burdens and can contribute. We feel responsible in delivering on our quality and knowledge, and we like the challenge to work, find solutions and innovate together.″
Zuyderland Medisch Centrum on Ahrend
″At the end of 2021, we decided to assign our entire interior furnishings portfolio to one partner. The positive experiences from the partnership that we have built, and Ahrend's high sustainability ambitions have led us to the decision to continue and expand our collaboration. The high-demand items are looked after through an online webshop and the ordering process is automated. Therefore, quotations are no longer necessary for regular orders. This saves valuable time that we rather spend on providing good healthcare, and on further developing our services.
We dare to apply new concepts at Zuyderland. In our new Hip and Knee Centre for example, we have opted for an innovative open setting, where the patient is seated practically next to the practitioner without an obstructing desk. We want to enable a psychologically equal conversation in this way: decide together. Challenging from an ergonomic point of view, but Ahrend helped us by developing an armchair with a higher seat and extendable worktop. As a result, the patient can get out of their chair easily, and the practitioner still has room to use the computer. Thanks to our collaborative partnership, Ahrend helps us to achieve our goals and shape our vision.″
Dirk Larue, Project Leader Real Estate, Construction & Technology at Zuyderland Medisch Centrum
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