In the Summer 2016 issue of Context we look at hospitals, playgrounds, community centers, and senior living projects with an eye on how public health is impacted by design.

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August 7, 2017
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Member News

Penn Team won 2017 Health and Human Services (HHS) Award

By Joyce Lee

Penn Urban Health Lab Building Healthy Places Team joining with the Sustainability Team at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)

The Penn Urban Health Lab team together with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention sustainability staff were the recipients of the 2017 HHS Green Champion “Good Neighbor” Award. The joint effort produces a design guide published by the American Institute of Architects (AIA) on Wellness Rooms Best Practice, providing space for lactation at the workplace and publicly accessible facilities. The coauthors are Joyce Lee, FAIA, Director of Building Healthy Places at the Urban Health Lab and Liz York, FAIA, Chief Sustainability Officer at the CDC.  The team includes Aidan Ganzert, ORISE Fellow at the CDC, Yubei Huang and Tong Niu, both graduate students at PennDesign.  The awards ceremony will be held in Atlanta in August. The nomination summary is as follows:
 
Good Neighbor
Small Group/Organization
Wellness Room Best Practices Design Guide
Joyce Lee, Liz York, Aidan Ganzert, Yubei Huang, Tong Niu

The Wellness Room Best Practices Design Guide is a groundbreaking partnership project bridging wellness, architecture and sustainability. This guide is an update on earlier work in 2008 - creating lactation spaces for women in the workplace. In addition to creating graphics and updated resources on the topic, the updated Wellness Room Design Guide project: 1) offers architects worldwide a new tool to significantly improve buildings where mothers with young children are working or visiting; 2) condenses the latest international research on such rooms in an authoritative format; and 3) provides guidelines on sustainable environments that literally support the nurturing and growth of mentally, emotionally and healthier children. This updated version incorporates key expert revisions, including three-dimensional images and translated versions in Spanish and Chinese. The guide has been widely reported on in the architecture space. The AIA national blog outlet reported a 90,000-person viewership of an article on the guide. The guide has also been shared with the CDC lactation support program (HRO), infant feeding team (ONDIEH), and the obesity prevention and control branch (ONDIEH).
 
“Working at the intersection of design and health is at the heart of my green health practice. With expert advice, our team identified essential design and technical criteria to make a functional and esthetically pleasing environment for mothers.  We are so gratified to have the opportunity to engage young professionals on our team that could benefit directly from the creation of these rooms, not only at the workplace, but also in the community,” says Joyce Lee, FAIA, President of IndigoJLD and Director of Building Healthy Places at the Lab.
 
“Sustainability and health are tightly entwined and it's nice to see recognition for these important health promoting programs. These partnerships are especially important because they represent commitment across industry, academia and government and that is what is needed to make positive change in the complex systems of our time,” says Liz York, FAIA, Chief Sustainability Officer, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
 
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