In late 2019, a completely new, ultra-modern and high-end hospital opened its doors for the first time: the Amphia at the Molengracht location in Breda. No less than 80,000 m2 of new construction was added to an existing building. Gispen furnished the entire building: over 9,000 products for reception areas, consulting rooms, patient rooms and living rooms. It goes without saying that everything had to be 100% operational when the new building was put into use. The health and well-being of the patients are paramount.
Major project, extensive tender procedure
The new hospital is designed in such a way that departments that regularly collaborate are situated close to one another. There are four towers, which all have their own focal point: Maternal and child health, Oncology, Cardiovascular care, and Intervention (from Emergency Room to Operating Rooms). Visitors first enter a central hall. From there, they pass through a spacious corridor, called the Passage, to be automatically guided to their destination in either the new or old building. Amphia published a tender with several options for the interior design of the new building, a major project.
Tini Bakker, New Amphia project manager: “Six parties took part in a pitching round in which they shared their vision on healthcare and expounded on their furnishing proposals. We asked three parties for a quote. Two of them, including Gispen, provided an array of trial setups in the central reception area. It was apparent in everything that Gispen showed us that their furnishing methods and know-how were in line with our requests and vision on healthcare.”
The client’s thoughts
I have been working in healthcare for 40 years and I know this hospital well. I also know the ways in which the furniture is being used. Gispen has been a flexible partner and has always responded adequately to our wishes. From the incredibly comfortable patient chairs to a factor such as hygiene – an action plan remains a concept up until the moment you stand in front of a piece of furniture. Only then will you be able to start finetuning things. The trial setups provided by Gispen were perfect down to the final detail. And whenever we wanted to see an alternative to a certain product, Gispen immediately presented other suitable options.
Teamwork at its best
Teamwork was certainly key to this project. Peter van der Linden, Healthcare business manager at Gispen: “We really tackled the new layout as a team. The Gispen team consisted of Ed Wulterkens as project manager, Nelleke Lagerwerf as the interior architect and myself as sales manager. We worked closely together with our partners at Amphia; short lines of communication with, for example, Tini Bakker and Mariska Ek.” Nelleke: “We also had Amphia patients and employees share their thoughts with us. During the two-day trial placement, at least 100 people gave their opinion on the trial furniture. Everyone was allowed to have their say – very thoughtful of Amphia. Moreover, we were able to include the feedback in the final products. We retrofitted the wheels of the patient chairs to improve their functionality, for example.”
'Aesthetically, functionally and technically on point’
After the project team made its kick-off, Nelleke spent six weeks talking with other project team members as well as employees from all departments who would be working at the new building. Nelleke: “What will be installed in which area, and where will it be allocated exactly? The architect had provided us with a preliminary floor plan and colour schemes for each department. Mariska Ek, interior design and renovation project coordinator at Amphia, developed various experience concepts. These served as my starting points for the final layouts, products, materials and colour proposals. What we needed to keep in mind was that each department has its own colour scheme, but with the possibility of exchanging items. It had to be possible for some products to be used in different departments.” Mariska: “We decided to give the patient rooms a tranquil interior design. More colour is found within the outpatient clinics, as well as the maternity and paediatric ward, of course. We constantly searched for the right balance: it all had to be just right – aesthetically, functionally and technically.”
Extra comfortable patient chairs promote recovery
Peter: “Amphia specifically asked for extra comfortable patient chairs to be installed in the patient rooms. Getting out of bed as quickly as possible and getting in motion will contribute to a patient’s recovery. Chairs from Prominent and Moments now assist them in doing so.” The consulting rooms are furnished with the TM Doc: an organically shaped table which makes it easier for the doctor and patient to come up with a treatment plan together, with additional 4-legged Zinn visitors’ chairs. At the office areas, physicians and other employees make use of incredibly comfortable Zinn office chairs – Gispen supplied 1,000 of these. The central reception area is furnished with round Gispen TEAM tables and Nomi chairs as well as Casala Corals waiting area seats: a modular piece of furniture, used slightly differently every time it is installed. The variety of furniture allows visitors to choose a seat that suits them best. A Havee coach seat, a chair at the reading table or one of the bucket seats (Casala Onyx Traverse), for example. Moreover, various rooms are provided with children's furniture, such as Gispen Bronto chairs in different colours and plastic puppies from Magis. Gispen also supplied various medical-ergonomic products, of course, such as saddle stools from Medisit.
Clever logistics, moving in efficiently
The logistics were all thought out well in advance. Project Manager Ed: “We split the delivery into thirty partial deliveries. This made each delivery easy to monitor. As far as I'm concerned, this is a good example of an sustainable delivery method; only well-planned and targeted deliveries per building section. Every time desks were installed, an ICT team came in directly after to make everything operational. The detailed plans for furniture allocation and the floor plan that Nelleke had made were a great help to us. What also helped was that I was involved in the project early on. When you get to know a building well and you do so quickly, you can furnish the place more effectively and efficiently.”
A word from the architect
Gispen was fully committed from the first pitch up until the final piece of furniture – and with so much enthusiasm and drive! It was very pleasant to be working with them on this project. Every time we had a request, Gispen just gave it that little bit extra. You can easily tell that the Gispen team has a lot of know-how when it comes to healthcare, and they truly enjoy doing what they do. We complemented each other well and communicated effectively. During the course of the project, I walked at least 50 kilometres a week through the new building. Now that everything is up and running, I am even more proud of what we have achieved together.”
Are you satisfied with the result?
Mariska: 'It only took two days to move into the new building: all the clinical wards on Friday, and the outpatient clinics on Saturday. On Thursday, the last baby was born in the old building and on Friday the first one was already born in the new building! A very special experience. I have also noticed that the new patient chairs are a success.” Tini: “Now that the building is truly alive, it has become the institution we had in mind. It is my experience that the facility management department usually calls the shots, and that the healthcare departments follow suit; now we were able to use everyone’s input and implement it right away. This definitely worked out as we had hoped. Proof that we have made the right choices together.”
Photography: Chris van Koeverden
Watch the video about the interior design of the Amphia Hospital: