Chairman’s Annual Report 2007

Last year I reported that the high level of activity that we had achieved overstretched the available time of executive members and were arranging an away day for the executive members early this year to review and clarify AfH’s objectives, to prioritise these, to develop achievable strategies and the means to resource them.

The Wellcome Trust generously provided us with accommodation in their building for the workshop, which was early in February.

The key priorities which emerged from the workshop are:

  • Contributing to promoting and improving the quality of healthcare buildings
  • Strengthening our links with likeminded organisations overseas
  • Being pro-active in developing the interest of UK Schools of Architecture in healthcare buildings
  • Maintaining our regular programme of events for members
  • To strengthen links with other disciplines
  • To raise the funds needed to achieve these objectives

During the course of the year we have begun to achieve success in developing these. In addition to the contributions from our events which meet these objectives, other developments have taken place during the year.

  • We have had discussions with the RIBA on their proposal for knowledge groups in their new Knowledge Management System.
  • We have also had meetings with the President and other representatives of Institute of Healthcare Engineering and Estate Management (IHEEM ) to discuss ways in which we can work together. To date this has predominantly focused on AfH having significant input to the IHEEM annual Harrogate Conference and to hold joint workshops with members of AfH and IHEEM on integration of architecture and engineering in designing healthcare buildings.

In addition to presenters from other countries at our regular events, AfH members participated in the Netherlands ideas competition this summer. For the 5th Design & Health Academy Congress held in Glasgow, AfH members contributed with articles for publication, presented papers, and sat on the judging panel for their design award.

AfH was also represented on the selection of the Wilmington’s Awards, the Building Better Healthcare Awards. At this point I would like to congratulate Ray Moss for receiving the Lifetime Achievement Award in the Best Class for People category. In addition to his many other roles he was founder and director of MARU and founder and first chair of AfH.

Just a few weeks ago AfH was well represented at the Global University Programmes in Healthcare Architecture (GUPHA) meeting in Tokyo and members presented three papers.

We continue our support of the Howard Goodman Fellowship of Imperial College.

Since the initiation of this study significant changes have taken place. Imperial College became one of the University Research Departments that are undertaking HACIRIC, a major project for the Department of Health (Health and Care infrastructure research and Innovation Centre). Our study has been incorporated into this. The outcomes are not what we expected but are promising to be useful and interesting.

Our Programme of Events:

November 2006

The event following our AGM in November addressed the topic Education: Opening the Debate. Three presenters from overseas: one from America, one from Holland, Sweden, and only one contributor from England presented their programmes. This demonstrated an important focus on healthcare design in other countries which is not offered in UK Schools of Architecture.

February 2007

The Reform Club Debate: “This House believes that contract requirements to comply with Department of Health Guidance Notes stifles innovation and inhibits good practice.”

The motion was carried – 16 for and 15 against

May 2007

Two-Day Study Visit to Belfast, hosted by John Cole, chief executive of Health Estates in Northern Ireland. Visited very well designed Primary and Acute healthcare buildings.

Knowledge Transfer Partnerships. Joint event with AfH and South Bank University

AfH: Hospices – at the King’s Fund. The event covered the principles of hospices and presented a wide range of projects and some excellent design.

AfH: Operating Theatres of the Future – Professor Eric Fosse of the University of Oslo, Norway. We were very privileged to have the expert on Future of Surgery and also an excellent presentation on the new Barn Theatre in Liverpool with presentations by surgeons and the architect.

July 2007

AfH: Switzerland 3-day Study Tour, arranged with the cooperation of Karen Imoberdorf of IImoberdorf of Itten + Brechbuhl AG

August 2007

AfH First Student Health Design Awards – We received 45 submissions. Twenty of which from UK. Others from USA, The Netherlands, Australia, Germany, Finland, and Peru. 14 were short listed of which 3 winners were selected. First winner Jonathan Pugh of Mackintosh School of Architecture in Glasgow, and the joint second winners: Elizabeth Makinson of University of Newcastle upon Tyne, and Stefan Kolen of Eindhoven University of Technology (Holland)

September 2007

AfH presentation of the Switzerland Study Tour

October 2007

AfH Stand at Harrogate Exhibition – This year we included on display the students submissions of our First Student Health Design Awards.

We are indebted to many people for their support and to thank them. I specific would like to thank our event sponsors and Yuli Toh who is leaving her position on the Executive. We are very grateful to her for everything she has done.

I wish to thank Polyflor for their continuing support and to Draëger Medical for their two years as associate sponsors which terminated last spring. This does mean that we very much need some more associate sponsors to enable us to continue with our developing activities. If there is anyone here who would like to consider this please speak to one of us this evening. We are also pleased to hear from anyone who might be interested in sponsoring one of our events.

We have achieved a great deal this year and I thank all of the members of the executive committee for their hard work.

I must finish with a serious plea for a small dedicated group of members to support the executive in a number of different ways. If you can offer a little of your time please let us know. We really need some help.

Ann Noble
29.11.07

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