Supporting the Patient Experience Through Wayfinding at Cortellucci Vaughan Hospital

August 30, 2021

Story

Mackenzie Health’s Cortellucci Vaughan Hospital, which opened as a full-service community hospital in June 2021, is the first hospital to be built in the City of Vaughan and the first net new hospital to be built in Ontario in 30 years, and with that an exemplary story of how wayfinding supports the patient experience. Clean, understated, simple and elegant, the wayfinding and signage program is designed to support well-being, reduce anxiety, and contribute to a positive and memorable hospital visit or stay.

At 1.2 million square feet and 11 storeys, the first step was to develop a clear and comprehensive wayfinding strategy to aid in the spatial understanding and navigation of this large hospital. In collaboration with the project architects, Stantec, and taking cues from the vertical circulation amenities, we designated zones using colours – orange and blue – which appear on all wayfinding signage and interior design elements as accent colours.

Dividing up and marking the facility in this way makes it easier for patients, visitors, and staff to identify which part of the facility they are in and therefore to self-direct to their destination using the available directional signs and wayfinding kiosks. The staggered linear pattern is inspired by the exterior architectural features of the building, making for a cohesive, integrated experience facility wide.

As with all healthcare facilities, we placed great emphasis on accessibility, ensuring the patient and visitor journey is welcoming to people of all ages, cultural backgrounds, and abilities. On signage, we used tactile characters and braille for all appropriate identification and amenity signage. High contrast levels, inclusive pictograms, and sans serif characters in upper and lower case also ensure a high level of legibility. Most importantly, simplified, consistent nomenclature communicates services so patients can identify their destination intuitively.

With an emphasis on providing the community with access to state-of-the-art health care, the hospital offers a full spectrum of services including Woman and Child, inpatient mental health, surgery, critical care, diagnostic imaging, medicine and a full-service emergency department.

Learn more about this project here.

Photography: Tom Arban