ANDRIA CASTELLANOS: Well, I think over the last 10 or even 15 years, we've seen in the hospital a lot of crossover with students and people in the hospitality industry. And in fact, now we really seek out for many of our professions in the hospital people who have had experience in the hospitality industry and formal training in the industry.
We're very focused on being a service organization. And so we're looking for people with that kind and level of experience. So when I say service organization, we focus a lot on patient-centered care, which includes providing patient-centeredness to the patient and to the family and to friends.
We also focus a lot on the kinds of things you do in the hotel industry as it relates to service standards. So what are the service standards associated with things like food and food delivery, things like linen and laundry services, things like environmental services, housekeeping, cleaning? And we're trying to develop and maintain service standards from no specialties to our staff and to our patients.
So I think there's a lot of applicability. And over I would say the last 10 years, we've hired specifically people who have been trained in the hospitality industry to bring that kind of rigor to our hospitals. Now I think there's a lot of opportunity to teach in a slightly different way some of the things that the people who are interested in hospitality but want to cross over into the hospital industry need to know.
And so very often when we hire people with pure hospitality experience, they come into the hospital and they're often shocked and surprised by the kinds of things that they see, because there's a whole second industry-- or really first industry-- which is taking care of patients and the whole clinical side of it so. There's often shock.
And in fact, sometimes burnout from people who are in the hospitality industry, it's a different aura in the hospital. It's a different almost focus in a hospital. And not everybody is cut out for that kind of work.
Also, the hospital industry is a very regulated industry, so transferring some of that into the education experience that the students go through in the hospitality school I think could be very beneficial for students who really are interested in careers in hospital management. The industry is extremely regulated by the federal government, and understanding those regulations are going to be really important for people to be successful in the industry.
I see that people who have no experience often come into a hospital. And it can take them a few years to learn all of the really important things that they need to know from an infection-control perspective and from regulatory requirements, around how hot does the water have to be when you clean the sheets.
There's also from a food perspective thousands and thousands of menus. And so it's not just that we have to serve good food, but we have to serve good food and we have to cater to many different kinds of menus. So teaching students those kinds of things I think would be very beneficial.
So I think recently there has been a lot of research done about what makes an experience a better experience for the patient in terms of design. And there's a lot of evidence out in terms of the types of colors you use for different populations, the kinds of artwork that you use in your facility, and even how you design space.
One of the biggest examples of that would be if you're designing a new hospital today, you would design only a single-room hospital. As opposed to even 15 years ago, you would never design a single-room hospital because some states, in particular New York state, actually didn't let you do that. And so from a regulatory perspective, 15 years ago you had to design double rooms.
So things are changing and evolving. The science has proven that there is a risk of less infections when a patient is in a single room. But more importantly, many of our patients now who need to be hospitalized need to be in isolation rooms because of the diseases that they have. And so one of the things we've done at New York Presbyterian is for our transplant population-- that's solid organ transplants-- we've actually created a single room unit for that population.
For all of our women who have delivered babies, we have created private rooms for all of those patients.
Understanding the elements that go into space planning is probably the single most important thing that your students can really know and understand. When you're first laying out the project, understanding the relationships between the spaces and the importance of those relationships, how those spaces are meaningful for patients and staff, the efficiencies or inefficiencies that can come out of a bad design or a good design are really, really important and essential. So I think that those relationships are really important.
Space designing in hospitals and in health care is a little different because of the kinds of uses that we have, obviously. So we have very highly, highly technical spaces, like operating rooms and procedure rooms with extremely expensive and highly technical equipment. And the more you know about that, the more you know.
And then we have more simple spaces that we design-- outpatient settings with exam rooms. Those are relatively easier designs, but also very important to do it right and to take into account the technology that you're going to put into the space, the patient flow, the staff flow, privacy. All of those things become very defining for projects.
And then the kinds of furniture and fixtures and surfaces that you use in health care are sometimes similar in the hospitality industry and sometimes different. And taking into account and learning about what is different and unique about health care as it relates to the differences associated from the hospitality industry, I think, are also important elements for your students to be aware of.
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Andria Castellanos, Group Senior Vice President and Chief Operating Officer, NYP/Columbia New York Presbyterian, was interviewed during the Cornell Hospitality, Health and Design Symposium, "In Search of a Healthy Future" on October 10, 2016.