Code Blue: How RWJ Revived Its Facilities To Deliver On Its Mission

Robert Wood Johnson Hospital Lobby Elevators and Walls

The Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital – or RWJ – is committed to building and fostering a “culture of health” that empowers people to live better lives. Their work is based on a solid foundation of community, quality, ease of access, and dignity and respect. Through an extensive, ongoing renovation project, RWJ is bringing its facilities up-to-date. This will allow them to continue delivering on their promises – and ensure their appearance reflects the quality of their care.

Great Care – Dated Facilities

When it comes to healthcare, RWJ is a leader. The problem was that you wouldn’t have necessarily known it from the state of some of their facilities. Worn and dated, they needed some updating. What better place to start than with the elevators? In a large hospital, elevators are critical to patient care and visitor experience.

RWJ needed elevator interiors that were:

  • Durable. With carts banging into the walls, personnel bustling around, and patients being transported, hospital elevators endure a great deal of use. The cabs had to be able to withstand abuse and look newer much longer.
  • Non-microbial. Hospitals are a hotbed for germs and bacteria; sanitary conditions are non-negotiable.
  • Easy to clean and maintain. With the risk of fluids, bacteria, and germs, the cabs had to be easy to clean. As well, dingy elevators don’t inspire confidence in patients and visitors.
  • Color-matched. RWJ wanted to be able to color coordinate the elevators and hallways so they could be used for wayfinding. For example, “Take the blue elevator to the blue hall, then follow the green corridor.” Such a technique makes navigating the facilities much easier.
  • Attractive. There’s no denying it; few people want to be in a hospital. Patients and visitors often experience stress and anxiety. Welcoming spaces can alleviate those feelings a bit.

We helped RWJ find the right solution for all of these needs. Wilsonart Compact, a specialty laminate is:

  • Extremely durable. It is often used in high-impact applications, such as lockers, cabinets, and elevator interiors. It will last for years, and it will look fresh and clean all the while.
  • Sanitary. The nonporous, non-microbial surface deters bacteria and germ growth. With routine cleaning, the hospital could vastly improve the health and safety of its elevators.
  • Color Compatible. Compact is available in over 200 colors and patterns. This made it easy for RWJ to accomplish its wayfinding mission.
  • Cost-Effective. Cost is always a consideration; with Wilsonart Compact, RWJ saved on initial costs. They will also continue to accrue savings for the life of the interiors, thanks to our interlocking panel system. For example, if a panel needs to be replaced for some reason, they can simply pull out the old one and install a new one quickly.

Beyond the Elevator

Since Wilsonart Compact was such a great solution for the cab interiors, why not extend it outside the elevators? This is just what RWJ did. Seeing the quality, durability, versatility, and practicality that the specialty laminate offered, they opted to have us install wall panels that provided the same benefits.

Not only did the use of coordinated elevator interiors and wall panels allow for a cohesive appearance throughout the building, it created a clean, healthy, attractive way to help people find their way around the hospital.

RWJ’s culture of health guides every decision they make; providing exceptional service and maintaining the highest standards is paramount. This commitment is now clearly reflected in their facilities. Each feature is designed to improve patient care and ensure a comfortable, soothing environment for anyone who walks through the doors.