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Age Related Day Services: Universal Design Technical Sketch

In this article, we'll compile a list of Universal Design features that supports Dementia Friendly Age Related Day Services
Technical sketch of a Universal Design Dementia Friendly Age Related Day Services

UD Dementia Friendly Design Guidance

A. The approach to the Day Service entrance should consist of a legible route leading to a clearly identifiable and easily located entrance space. Provide covered entrance to strengthen legibility and affords a transition space between inside and outside.

B. Provide an easily located and identifiable public entrance to the Day Service. This entrance should be highlighted and clearly differentiated from adjacent entrances through the use of colour or other visual cues. Provide a door that is accessible, easily operated and understood. Ensure there is ample space for drop-offs and collections.

C. Locate toilets so that they are easily identified upon entry, and are accessible and easy to use. Provide enough toilets throughout the Day Service so that they are within easy reach of the patients in the day room and the treatment or consulting rooms.

D. Ensure the reception area is directly visible from the entrance area and is accessible, easily understood and used.

E. Provide a spacious waiting area with generous circulation area and clearance between seating. Consider a less institutional seating layout and more comfortable furnishing to create a more homelike environment.

F. Provide a clearly articulated and legible main circulation route for patients. Provide clear and consistent signage and information to facilitate orientation and navigation. If appropriate provide a looped route to provide an internal walking area for people who may be restless or who need to be mobilised.

G. Provide views to calm exterior spaces and natural light to relax patients and orientate them to the time of day and season.

H. Provide direct access to an outdoor space where patients can step outside to get some fresh air, or sit out to dine or socialise.

I. Consider the creation of covered outdoor space directly adjacent to garden access. This will provide a sheltered seating area and a transition zone between inside and outside.

J. Create a comfortable layout with differentiated spaces for dining or group activities, sitting together, or alone.

K. Provide large format clocks and calendars to help with orientation to time.

L. Use distinct and contrasting colours on doorframes, doors, or wall reveals to identify patient areas or rooms, while simultaneously disguising non-patient rooms by painting doors or frames to match background.

M. Use contrasting colours or tones to distinguish the floor from the walls. Similarly, use contrasting colour on the skirting boards to provide a visual break between the walls and the floors to ensure greater visual contrast.

N. All floor finishes should be non-slip, non-glare, and avoid strong patterns or sharp tonal or colour contrast. The avoidance of contrast is very important at door thresholds to prevent those with visual or cognitive impairments misinterpreting this contrast as a step.

O. Careful use of artificial lighting and the reduction of noise through sound absorbing materials can help create a more supportive environment

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Dementia Inclusive Hospitals from a Universal Design Approach

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