Emergency Waiting Rooms

A co-design investigation into Emergency Department waiting rooms.


Partner organisation

  • Cabrini

In response to increased demand and limited resources, Emergency Departments across the developed world are experiencing increased strain (Lowthian et. al, 2012; Derlet, 2002). This has prompted a range of quality and service improvement initiatives that aspire to help Emergency Departments do more with less (Rongsheng et. al, 2012). As more patients arrive at Emergency Departments, more are having to wait – and wait longer – to receive treatment.

This PhD project builds on a body of emerging knowledge (Iedema et. al, 2008; Piper and Iedema, 2010; Reay et. al, 2017) around the ‘front of house’ in the Emergency Department, and investigates how experiences and coordination of care might be improved in Emergency Department waiting rooms.

Through the creation of an experimental ‘playground’ to deal with highly complex and integrated problems, this project provides a platform for further design research and practice into Emergency Department design. Furthermore, this paper also presents how co-design can also foster an environment in which ideas about the future can be entertained and investigated (Sanders and Stappers, 2012).