Arrington receives award for work on special isolation unit design

71316AmyArrington175Amy Arrington, MD, medical director of Texas Children’s special isolation unit, was recently named one of Healthcare Design magazine’s 4th Annual HCD 10 winners.

The HCD 10 is an elite group of design and architect professionals who represent the most exciting, inspirational and influential health care work of the previous year. Nominations were accepted earlier this year and were reviewed by the Healthcare Design editorial staff, which determined the final winners.

Arrington was recognized under the clinician category for her work in the design of Texas Children’s Special Isolation Unit, which opened in November 2015 and is the only one of its kind in Texas and the southwest region. Designated just for children, the eight-bed unit is located on the fifth floor of Texas Children’s Hospital West Campus and is fully equipped to care for any infant or child with a serious communicable disease and has all of the measures available to assure safety of the health care team, other patients and their families.

Arrington was involved in the development and design of the special isolation unit from the beginning of the project, including the initial concept planning, facility design, construction, and ultimately the staffing of the unit. She and several of her colleagues traveled to other biocontainment units in the United States, including units in Nebraska and Georgia.

“As a team, we designed a unit that incorporated all necessary requirements for true biocontainment, while adapting this unit to fit the needs of pediatric patients and the community,” Arrington said. “Additionally, I led a mid-construction patient simulation, which was performed in a to-scale mock up space to recognize and address latent safety threats and design needs prior to the completion of construction.”

The simulation identified 48 unique recommendations: 33 were related directly to physical space and design, while 15 were recommendations related to systems and processes, as well as clinical performance and procedures. Arrington currently oversee all training of the unit’s special response team, and full patient simulation exercises are performed four times a year in the unit in order to practice safe patient care and unique unit workflows. She also is the section chief of Global Biologic Preparedness and she is an attending physician in Pediatric Critical Care Medicine.

Healthcare Design magazine serves an audience of architects, interior designers, hospital administrators, facility managers, engineers and key members of the construction community as a premiere source of insight, information and inspiration for planning, design and constructing new or renovated health care facilities.

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