Sabine Megow and Sophie Michel

Sabine Megow and Sophie Michel, who are currently studying at the TU Berlin, Germany, entered the Architects for Health’s First Student Health Design Award (2007) with the following submission. For contact please email:,

Elementary: A Mobile Health Centre


The task was to design a mobile health centre, which can be transported to the destination and can be built up very quickly to help immediately in case of a crisis situation. To help quickly the hospital should be build up in phases and should be able to help by completion of the first construction phase.

Design Explanation

The Elementary health care centre is designed as a modular lightweight construction in order to help developing countries or crisis areas. Therefore, it shall help to supply health care in emergency situations and become a clinic that provides prevention, education and enlightment by expansion buildings which provides a lasting health infrastructure in the crisis area.

Since the aim of the Elementary Clinic is to help in developing countries it offers services like preventional medical check ups, supplying medication, health care, medical training and assemblies for the community. This way the clinics´ target is also to be a starting point of infrastucture and communication for the locals.

In order to help as quick as possible in the crisis area, the medical treatment building (1125 sqm) is completely prefabricated and shipped to the destination. There are two container types necessary:

Modular lightweight elements of 2,40m x 2,40m are stacked, framed and can be transported as a 20 feet container.

20 feet Cargo containers are used for transporting the rest of the structural members.

After shipping the containers continue their journey by lorry. At the arrival the modular elements are taken out of the frame and used on the construction, which will take ten days.

The other buildings (expansion: Service, patients rooms and apartments for staff) will be build of the local building material such as bamboo, wood, brick, stone etc. In case there is no building material available at the destination, the buildings can also be build of prefabricated modules.

A modular membrane roof is installed to provide sun and weather protection.

The service building (500 sqm) will be constructed within a month. The patients´, apartments and administrations buildings (450 sqm each) will be constructed within two months. All the buildings are connected with “bridges” and courtyards.

The different users of the clinic are using a corridor system which guarantees a strict and safe separation between visitors and staff members. Short distances between Entrance, triage and emergency rooms secure a smooth order of events in the clinic.

The Architects for Health
First Student Health Design Award
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