June 15, 2021. Farrow has authored a report titled – “Wood and Well-being in Long Term Care Environments: A review of the neuro-psychological, emotional and spiritual benefits of wood structures for aging communities.” An increase in life expectancy has placed new and growing demands and challenges on our hospitals and long-term care facilities, all further exacerbated by Covid. We now have an opportunity to re-evaluate how the design of LTC facilities can better support the needs of residents, visitors and staff by focusing on the therapeutic capacity that our buildings can have on human health.

One of the most impactful choices that can be made in design is the intentional selection of building materials, like mass timber. On a neurobiological level, wood buildings support the theory of enriched environments which considers the role that sense perception (olfactory, tactile, visual and auditory) has on our cognitive and physical health and wellbeing.

Images: Typical LTC resident room clad in drywall; Farrow designed LTC room with mass timber ceiling and exterior wall.