KAISER PERMANENTE Total Health Environments Research, Strategy, Brand and Design.
As the largest managed care organization in the US, providing medical service to nearly 9 million members from Washington DC to Hawaii, Kaiser Permanente saw an opportunity to view the built environment as a physical expression of its brand and values. They sought to better understand how their facilities and process needed to communicate a deep understanding of their customers needs, emotions and outlook on wellness. To deliver on this aspiration, we embarked on an 18-month research investigation. Best illustrated through their “Thrive” campaign, Kaiser is committed to enabling a proactive, empowered lifestyle of wellness. This fundamental shift away from more conventional healthcare systems based in treatment and reaction to illness is founded in their position of “Total Health” — a balance of mind, body and spirit.
Design Research
The process began with competitor research and a review of Kaiser's existing brand literature. Next, “walk-alongs” quickly explored many different facilities to understand the overall context of Kaiser Permanente. Other tools included more in-depth observations, interviews with patients to understand their thoughts and feelings about their visits, and participatory workshops with stakeholders to imagine opportunities for the future.
1 client
8 regions
18 hospitals
26 m.o.b.’s and clinics
19 weeks
6 research methods
9 nbbj team members
7 client team members
121 patients
4 workshops with 40 participants 
180+ concepts on environmental design, service and strategy.
5 principles to improve patient, visitor and care giver experience.
10 precepts to guide design concept and development.