Eryl Jones, of the Assa Abloy Door Hardware Group, discusses the key issues that decision-makers and facilities managers need to be aware of when it comes to inclusive design for healthcare buildings, the critical considerations for
Eryl Jones, Managing Director of the Assa Abloy Door Hardware Group, discusses the key issues that decision-makers and facilities managers need to be aware of when it comes to inclusive design for healthcare buildings, the critical considerations for door opening solutions, and the potential risks of not complying with these.
Inclusive design is defined as an ‘approach to the design of an environment, including buildings and their surrounding spaces, to ensure that they can be accessed and used by everyone’. When talking about inclusive design, many people immediately think of those with a disability, or specific, specialist requirements. While inclusive design encompasses the needs of these people, its key objective is to make a site inclusive for all, no matter what.
In fact, despite public perception, and the wheelchair being the symbol for accessibility, less than 8 per cent of disabilities require the use of a wheelchair. Whether it’s the elderly, the disabled, or children, everyone should be able to access and use a building and its facilities easily and safely. This is a critical requirement in hospitals and other healthcare settings, which cannot afford to compromise on inclusivity. However, evidence across the building industry suggests that there is still a great deal of confusion and non-compliance surrounding the guidance governing inclusive design. This includes Approved Document M, the Equality Act 2010 and, crucially, BS 8300-1 and 8300-2:2018, which set out how buildings should be designed, constructed, and maintained, to create an accessible and inclusive environment for all.
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