Art and Therapeutic Design

Over £5 million of charity funding has been pledged to the project from the Edinburgh Children's Hospital Charity (£3.1m) and the Edinburgh and Lothians Health Foundation (£2m).

This money will be used for arts and therapeutic design projects and will enhance the look and feel of the new building.
This work includes relocating existing artefacts, new equipment and play therapy, enhancement to play spaces, as well as interior design upgrades and entertainment for patients and families.

Art and therapeutic design is recognised as an essential activity in the provision of a modern contemporary healthcare building.

An extensive programme of art and therapeutic design projects has been commissioned which is generously funded by the Edinburgh and Lothians Health Foundation and the Edinburgh Children's Hospital Charity. Working closely with NHS staff and the building design team
Ginkgo Projects is responsible for the curation and delivery of this programme. 
The projects have been developed in response to the staff and patient engagement process undertaken at the design stage. The patient care pathway has provided a conceptual structure to allow us to focus on areas where patients gain most from therapeutic design and art enhancement.
The overall aim of the Art and Therapeutic Design programme is to enhance the patient experience of visiting and staying in hospital through promoting a real sense of grounded and connected art and design practice that draws out the uniqueness of this building within its social, cultural and physical context.  The programme draws on the substantial evidence of the role of therapeutic design and art to impact on the provision of healthcare by:
  • reducing patient stress through enhancing way-finding;
  • de-institutionalising spaces to support patient dignity;
  • impacting on recovery times;
  • reducing the requirement for pain-relief medication; Areas that are core to many of the projects include:
  • creating a sense of place
  • meeting stress with dignity
  • distraction in support of clinical provision
  • participation and personalisation
Innovation and design development based on current research practice in relation to the therapeutic nature of each is key to each project within the programme.  We aim to demonstrate best practice and to contribute to on-going dialogue and practice in the development and realisation of this programme through working with a wide range of partners.
An Art and Therapeutic design group has been established consisting of the NHS project team, key staff users representation and the two main charities (Edinburgh and Lothians Health Foundation (ELHF) and Edinburgh Sick Kids Friends Foundation (SKFF).  This group has worked proactively to agree the main prioritised project strands for enhancement.

Details on all the projects can be found on on the Art & Therapeutic Design​ blog

Last Reviewed: 08/06/2017