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New hospital makerspace encourages innovation and co-creation

New makerspace FRONTLAB at university hospital Rigshospitalet invites patients, staff and companies to co-create, test and develop new ways of caring for the sick.

The hospital of the future won’t build itself. That’s why the Copenhagen Science City-partner Rigshospitalet is inviting patients and partners to create new solutions for a better hospitalization experience. In order to facilitate experimentation and testing, they have created the makerspace Frontlab.

Escape hospital constraints to test new solutions

With Frontlab, Rigshospitalet hopes to make room for innovation and collaboration between patients, companies, researchers and other actors. FrontLab will have a large workshop area as well as a mockup area where users can test prototypes of new products under conditions that are not constrained by the usual hospital framework.

The ambition with Frontlab is to make innovation and user involvement easier, convenient and concrete for both clinicians, patients, relatives and partners, says Henning Langberg, Rigshospitalet’s Chief Innovation Officer.

Think Different

Recycled furniture, plywood partitioning and raw walls complete a setting with room to think differently. Space to test ideas for new treatment equipment, designs and installations for better user experiences at Rigshospitalet.

First project? A child-friendly hospital

One of the first projects at the new facility is to create a child-friendly welcome at the children’s hospital, BørneRiget, currently under construction at Rigshospitalet. Parents often have to take in a lot of information when they arrive at the hospital. This gives the child time to wait and often they start to worry, explains Toke Laugesen who leads the user experience team at BørneRiget.

We know that first impressions mean a lot to the overall experience. Playful installation art in the hospital arrival area are among the solutions we are testing. Right now, we examine the user experience of a giant skittles game and a large, suspended fish. We are learning an incredible amount from that”: Toke Laugesen, Architect and Project Leader, Børneriget.

One of several test facilities

In addition to Frontlab, Rigshospitalet is also in the process of establishing a number of new test facilities directly in the clinics. The goal is to establish an operating room and a patient rooms, where innovators can try out new equipment in practice.