It's safe to say that the future falls on our new generation to create, innovate and drive business, community and beyond. In honor of this we asked the Parsons students involved in The Patient Gown by Care+Wear x Parsons to share their experiences in being part of something that evolved to building an industry-shaking product: redefining the hospital gown. Here's what they had to say...
"The most innovative thing about the gown is how much humanity we brought into it. The amount of time and energy of real people and incredible stories that the new gown has in it is truly moving and innovative."
"I think that the most innovative part of the gown is the attention that it paid to the humans that interact with it. Every single iteration of the gown was tried on, tested, and critiqued by real patients, doctors, and nurses. Everyone’s voices were heard and had a direct impact in shaping the final gown. This resulted in a gown that is empowering for patients to wear but also highly functional."
"I wanted to be a part of this project because I believe in designing with purpose to instigate the idea that patients are not just problems that need to be solved—they are people whose feelings need to be considered in every step of our healthcare system."
"I previously volunteered at a hospital for two years, and I’ve always noticed how the patient’s body language and gestures while wearing the current hospital gown show that they feel intense discomfort and lack of dignity in the garment. They would always try to cover themselves quickly when I entered their room to assist them. I wanted to do something to help them."
"I was surprised at how difficult it was to find a balance between patient comfort and patient access. Through user-testing and consulting doctors and nurses, it was eye-opening to see what people of different ages and health backgrounds could or could not do in our prototypes. It only went to show how essential user testing is and that not everything could be fully designed through just predictions and estimates."
This class was critically important to me because I have personally stayed at the hospital for a long time as well as accompanied various people in my family. I know how denigrating, uncomfortable and frustrating it can be to wear a hospital gown that tears away your dignity. As a designer I felt I finally had an opportunity to make a change in people's lives that could change the way they feel and experience their painful moments.
"On my way home to Taiwan a lady near me was experiencing heart palpitations. The flight attendants were running asking for any doctors or nurses on board. It happened so close to me but I couldn't do anything to help. Luckily, there was a doctor on board who helped the lady to safety. It made me reflect on what I was doing with my life and what I could be. At that moment I told myself: I'm gonna do it [The Project]! I want to design something not just beautiful clothes, but something that can help others. That is what brought me here, and a trigger point for me."
"The final gown meant a lot to me because I had a brother who died of lymphoma cancer. As you can imagine, he spent extended periods of time in the hospital. On the first day when Care + Wear introduced themselves to the class, they showed us the PICC line cover that they produce. At that moment, I remembered the problems he had with the hospital gown and the need for more health wear. I am grateful to Care + Wear and to all those who made this project happen for giving me the opportunity to work on a project that could benefit others."
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