Chairman’s Report 2002

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  1. We have had another busy and active year and our membership continues to increase. The Executive meeting has been held monthly to try to benefit from as many as possible of the opportunities as are offered to us.
  2. AfH has been actively working to get better sponsorship (but always welcomes any suggestions or approaches) to provide AfH with some paid support to:
    • free up more time for executive committee members to be more proactive in developing new initiatives and to be involved in more activities on the society’s behalf
    • make the outcomes of our events and endeavours more available to a wider audience
  3. This year AfH is represented on the NHS Estates Design Knowledge Group and NHSE Patient Environment Group. The Knowledge Group Information Network is ambitious and has the potential to be very good in terms of making design and research guidance widely available.
    • We have also participated in four of the Prince’s Foundation Workshops with Trusts undertaking PFI schemes – Pinderfields Hospital Wakefield, Ryhope Tyne & Wear, Salford and Lewisham
    • We sent six display boards to Japan for exhibition at the 31st Healthcare Engineering Association of Japan Annual Conference and Exhibition 12 – 15th November 2001. Contributing practices included: Avanti Architects Ltd, Devereux Architects Ltd Michael Hopkins & Partners, Nightingale Associates and Tangram Architects and Designers Ltd
    • I attended the third GUPHA Forum in Genoa on behalf of AfH, making and renewing many useful contacts. “The focus of current activities of GUPHA is ‘Global Hospitals 2050’, which will outline the global healthcare environment including hospitals, in the year 2050.” GUPHA is an International Forum of Academics looking to the future and sharing research
    • Paul Mercer and I had an interesting meeting at the RIBA with Richard Hastilow and colleagues with the Health Client Forum – attempting to rationalise the roles and relationships of the two organisations
    • Dermot O’Reilly and Paul Mercer met with Richard Hastilow and senior representatives of a number of the Royal Colleges and the NHS Confederation, Modernisation Agency with the purpose of attempting to bring together the theoreticians, the practitioners and the designers in the alliance. Again an interesting meeting was held and we look forward to a follow-up
  4. Our interest in furthering the education of young architects, and raising awareness of healthcare design was developed by holding a two-day workshop at the RIBA (Interbuild) Conference in Birmingham. On each day three groups of part III students were briefed by the client for the Sandwell LIFT Initiative. “A brief introduction to some general planning principles (and encouragement to challenge them) led to a debate about the service content as expressed in the existing project specification. Each group considered the design implications and potential for one of the three projects, each of which was expected to be a sample scheme in Tranche One of the LIFT programme. Members of AfH worked with each group and many architects attending the RIBA conference watched and participated in the process. The groups all came up with different approaches and different levels of design solution. The amount they achieved in one day was impressive. At the end of each day the students presented their work to the Client representatives and an impressive panel of critics. The event was a great success. Thanks are due to Richard Nugent and his team from the PCT, to the members of AfH who facilitated and participated in the workshop and made the event a success, and not least to those practices who released their staff for the day: Abbey Holford Rowe, MAAP, Mason Richards, Nightingale Associates, Peerless + Noble Architects, Percy Thomas Partnership, Swanke Hayden and Tangram Architects and Designers Ltd.
  5. Our year’s programme of events has been very successful and well attended. This year’s Reform Club Debate, “This house believes that a good architect and an informed client are all you need for good design”, took place on 28th February 2002. The motion was proposed by Health Planner Gavin Maxwell, seconded by Richard Burton of ABK, and opposed by the RIBA President Paul Hyett, seconded by Stan Hornagold, of Hornagold and Hills.On 23rd April one of our members Peter Senior, the Director of Arts for Health at Manchester Metropolitan University, who recently received the Chevalier des Arts et des Lettres medal from the French government for services to French healthcare, addressed us on the creation and development of the whole arts in healthcare movement at the RIBA.Dermot O’Reilly organised a visit to Swindon and Marlborough PFI Hospital. I would like to take this opportunity to thank Dermot, who is retiring from AfH for his work on the Executive Committee and to wish him luck in sorting out the Welsh Assembly.On 11-12th June 2002 the RIBA Conference, the Design Workshops at the NEC in Birmingham when the part III students’ event and the Sandwell LIFT Briefing took place.NHS Estates Design Workshop was held at Skipton House on 28th June 2002. NHS Estates invited a diverse selection of groups and individuals to the session. The purpose of the session was broadly to inform NHS Estates of the scope and aspirations of some of the healthcare environment initiatives which are currently in train around the country. Fifteen different groups, including Architects for Health, made presentations. We reported a doubling of membership over the last two years, an increasingly successful and adventurous events programme, links with healthcare architects across the globe and aspirations to become engaged with education and research. Presentations from MARU, the NHS Modernisation Agency, CABE, the Kings Fund and many others were useful in setting out current plans and allowing a quick view into associated worlds. NHS Estates have promised to collate the presentations from the day and to arrange further sessions along the same lines.On 17th September 2002 an A+E [Clinical Services] Services Event was held at the RIBA and new approaches to the intractable problems of A&E provision were considered. The main speakers were:
    • Karen Castille, Director, Emergency Services, NHS Modernisation Agency
    • David Cheesman, Director of Emergency Care, Whipps Cross University Hospital
    • Doug Wantling, Director of Estates and Facilities, also at Whipps Cross

    The Panel Members were:

    • Mr John Heyworth, President of the British Association for Accident and Emergency Medicine
    • Susanne Senhenn, GP in practice in Epsom
    • Lynda Holt, Chair of the A+E Nursing Association of the Royal College of Nursing
    • Aidan Smyth, Health Planner with the Northern Ireland Health Estates Agency

    On the 5-7th November 2002 “The Way Ahead” Conference was held in Solihull and a paper was given by Richard Burton and supported by AfH.

    The NHS Estates/IHEEM Conference – Lunchtime Open Discussion on Health Associated Infection, chaired by Paul Mercer, was held on the 12th November 2002 and attracted some thirty delegates. Susan Wainwright of Tangram Architects gave an introduction to her work at the Epsom General Hospital Unit, South West London Elective Orthopaedic Centre (SWELOC). Research in USA at the Hospital for Special Surgery in New York, covering among other things: careful theatre design with an inner sanctum of cleanliness around the table, additional theatre suits for surgeons and others.

  6. Former AfH Chair Ray Moss reports on the Howard Goodman Bursary as follows: “One of the most important things I have learned over the past couple of years is that the speed of an endeavour like this is governed by the committee that meets least frequently. That said, and building on last year’s progress report, I am happy to tell you that a positive outcome is within our grasp. The amount of money raised is now considered sufficient, by our advisors, to make a confident start and, as I mentioned last year, Imperial College has indicated its willingness to accommodate us. Putting these two things together it is proposed that the official launch of the project and the advertisement inviting expressions of interest in the post of Research Fellow will happen in December of this year. Following this it is hoped to make an appointment early in the New Year but please watch the press for further details. This is a crucially important time in preparing for the future success of the work and I would be glad to hear from anyone who has an interest in contributing. Hopefully the next report will come from the unit itself!
  7. Future events include:
    • The AfH Northern branch which will be holding an event at CUBE (Centre for the Understanding of the Built Environment) 113-115 Portland Street, Manchester commencing 6.00 pm on Tuesday 10th December 2002on the new Manchester Royal Infirmary PFI Scheme. There will be presentations by Helen Jackson of the Central Manchester NHS Trust, Ken Schwartz of Anshen Dyer and Michael Davis of Catalyst Healthcare.
    • Next year’s Reform Club debate is on February 27th 2003. The motion is still being agreed.
  8. We are very pleased with what we have achieved and would like to record our thanks to all those who have helped to make our events a success, including the AfH Executive, our sponsors Polyflor and HBG Construction, as well as our event sponsor for this evening Ege Carpets, and our hosts, the Richard Rogers Partnership. We are delighted to report that we have received five nominations for the four vacancies on the Executive Committee.

Ann Noble
November 2002

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