Patients visiting their primary care providers see considerable evidence of technology becoming more prevalent in the examination room. Doctors use laptop computers during visits; examination equipment is now digital and wi-fi connected; and office staffers communicate with patients by text or email.

Simone Healthcare Development has accommodated technology’s growing presence by building examination rooms with high-speed internet ports and increased electrical wiring for the new gear. Now the pandemic is accelerating other healthcare trends, particularly touchless tech and automation.

We’ve already seen hands-free technology at work with hand sanitizer stations and hand-washing sinks. The endless need to sanitize surfaces to avoid contagion has some medical providers asking their landlords to modify interior doors so that they will automatically open when someone approaches.

Illness screening protocols will require many of these automated doors to be connected to thermal sensors at entrances, where the devices will temperature check visitors before doors open. Medical office landlords should expect to install more thermal sensors as the technology becomes more affordable.

Medical office builders will also have to consider how they will build self-sanitizing examination or waiting rooms and which technologies—ultraviolet lights, ceiling misting systems or others—will work best for tomorrow’s medical practices.

Simone Healthcare Development’s architects are already incorporating into their designs the post-pandemic protocols that will become permanent, while allowing space flexibility to incorporate tomorrow’s demands.