Niagara Health has recently registered the South Niagara Project with the International WELL® Building Institute to work towards becoming WELL® v2 certified. If successful, and once the South Niagara hospital is open, the South Niagara Project will be the first WELL® certified healthcare facility in Canada - focused on the health and well-being of staff, physicians, volunteers, patients, families, caregivers and the Niagara community.
WELL® Certification is scientifically developed and an independently verified tool to help design buildings and measure and monitor their impact of the health and well-being of the occupants. WELL® certification is recognized worldwide throughout the architectural and building communities. Certification aligns with LEED® using a similar certification system of Silver, Gold and Platinum levels and based on a points system.
WELL® Certification is based on ten concepts: Air, Water, Nourishment, Light, Movement, Thermal Comfort, Sound, Materials, Mind and Community. Each concept aims to improve building design, operations and the overall impact on the occupant’s specific body systems such as Cardiovascular, Digestive, Endocrine, Immune, Muscular, and Respiratory.
Using a unified standard and a dynamic scorecard, the WELL digital platform will guide the project team through the development of the South Niagara Project and will set out project-specific parameters. The parameters will be built to include multiple opportunities for staff, physician and community engagement.
“We are very fortunate to be in a position to plan for a new hospital in Niagara. Building from the ground up allows us to look at health in every aspect. The spaces we live and work in everyday have a significant impact on people. By examining the amount of exposure to light, air quality, thermal comfort and mental health strategies, the South Niagara Project will better align the relationship between the surrounding environment and our health.”
John Bragagnolo, Board Chair, Niagara Health
“While Niagara Health excels at providing well-being programs across all of our sites, we are very proud to take on the endeavor to lead the way in designing Canada’s first healthcare facility that will be built to further advance health and well-being and help our staff, physicians and volunteers work, live, perform and feel their best. Thanks to an evolving and growing evidence base, we will know how to design a facility that will fuel our bodies, keep us moving, inspire our best work and facilitate a good night’s sleep.”
Dr. Tom Stewart, CEO, Niagara Health
“Niagara Health has prioritized recruiting and retaining top talent by creating a culture that is committed to fostering a productive, safe and comfortable work environment where staff and physicians can learn and grow. To maintain high employee satisfaction, it is important to create a healthy, vibrant environment where people can perform at their best. Working toward WELL® certification will provide yet another benchmark to ensure we are building a healthier Niagara.
Angela Zangari, Interim President, Niagara Health