Infectious Disease Mitigation: 9 Healthcare Facilities Designed by MASS

Addressing contextual severe healthcare problems, like the outbreak of infectious diseases or maternal mortality, MASS has helped in setting design strategies to mitigate and reduce critical medical concerns. With some projects operational, and others in the pipeline, the facilities imagined, tackle a wide range of complications.

Infectious Disease Mitigation: 9 Healthcare Facilities Designed by MASS - More Images+ 15

In Haiti, MASS created the GHESKIO Cholera Treatment Center, a 100-patient treatment center that provides dignified care and on-site wastewater management; as well as the GHESKIO Tuberculosis Hospital, a facility that assures long term care for patients with tuberculosis. On the African continent, the studio’s interventions generated the Butaro District Hospital in Rwanda, helping in reducing the transmission of airborne diseases; and the Maternity Waiting Village in Malawi, completed in 2015, a prototype structure where expectant mothers can stay and receive proper care until their delivery.

ACEGID. Image Courtesy of MASS Design Group

Other projects, expected in 2020, include the African Centre of Excellence for Genomics of Infectious Diseases, in Nigeria, a cutting-edge facility that supports the surveillance, control, and elimination of infectious diseases; and the Nyarugenge District Hospital in Rwanda where MASS implemented their design standards. Moreover, to fight the Ebola epidemic, the firm proposed the Redemption Hospital in Liberia; and for one of Rwanda’s poorest districts, MASS developed the Munini District Hospital. Finally, on the other side of the planet, in Texas, US, the Family Health Center at Virginia Parkway, a medical home designed to create a sustainable model for health, will be completed soon.

Family Health Center at Virginia Parkway. Image Courtesy of MASS Design Group

General recommendations recurring in their projects include design-oriented solutions rather than technological tools. MAAS focuses on minimizing energy use, ensuring effective infection control, and reducing operational costs. Ventilation, natural lighting, green surroundings, circulation, layouts dictate their approach. Nevertheless, the studio often opts for surfaces covered by materials that have infection-resistant properties and lighting fixtures that can deactivate microbes.

Nyarugenge District Hospital. Image Courtesy of MASS Design Group

Read on for a selection of their interventions in the healthcare field.  

Butaro District Hospital

Butaro, Burera District, Rwanda

Butaro Hospital. Image © Iwan Baan

Part of Rwanda’s commitment to rebuild the country’s health system and bring high-quality healthcare to the nation’s poorest region, the new 150-bed Butaro District Hospital was designed to mitigate and reduce the transmission of airborne diseases. In fact, the overall layout, ventilation, lighting, and circulation were developed following this conceptual logic. The hallways are exterior to the building so that all movements occur in open-air, patient rooms are filled with natural light and aeration. Cross-ventilation is supported by fans, louvers, large operable windows, and high ceilings. Moreover, installed Ultraviolet Germicidal Irradiation (UGVI) light fixtures deactivate microbes lower the risk of transmission, as air is drawn upward. Ensuring services for inpatient and outpatient services, focusing primarily on maternal assistance, the facility includes a laboratory, neonatal intensive care unit, and operating rooms.

GHESKIO Cholera Treatment Center

Port-au-Prince, Ouest Department, Haiti

Gheskio Cholera Treatment Center. Image © Garrett Nelli

In order to provide a new infrastructure to combat the cholera outbreak in Haiti, more durable than the tent-based clinics, MASS in collaboration with Les Centres GHESKIO, a Haitian healthcare and research organization, designed the Cholera Treatment Center (CTC), a facility that can accommodate one hundred patients at a time. Putting in place skylights and plantings, the patient care center generated comfortable environments for recovery. Moreover, with on-site wastewater management, the building has the capacity to treat more than 250,000 gallons of sewage a year, helping prevent recontamination of the area’s water table. Opened in 2015, the CTC has helped mitigate the spread of cholera, by treating sick patients and developing a local water and sanitation infrastructure.

GHESKIO Tuberculosis Hospital

Port-au-Prince, Ouest Department, Haiti

GHESKIO Tuberculosis Hospital . Image © Iwan Baan

The healthcare complex provides a space for patients to undergo long-term treatment, lasting up to 24 months. Highly infectious, the tuberculosis outbreak in Haiti occurred shortly after the 2010 earthquake disrupted the country’s health infrastructure. The GHESKIO Tuberculosis Hospital was designed to in order to control infection and address the patients’ trauma. In fact, strategies as passive ventilation helped reduce in-hospital transmission. Moreover, the health care facility includes 32 patient isolation suites, exam and x-ray rooms, offices, nurse stations, and two pharmacies.

Maternity Waiting Village

Kasungu, Kasungu District, Malawi

Kasungu Maternity Waiting Village, Malawi . Image © Iwan Baan

In collaboration with the University of North Carolina and the Malawi Ministry of Health, MASS developed a new prototype for maternity waiting homes (MWH) in Malawi, where maternal mortality is a major public health challenge. Within reach of a hospital, these homes provide areas where expected mothers can stay until their delivery in order to receive proper care. Creating a space to sleep, adequate ventilation, and sanitation, the Maternity Waiting Home, puts in a place a village-like structure, composed of smaller sleeping units. Inspired by local vernacular architecture, MAAS’ design optimizes natural ventilation, daylighting, rain-water collection, and solar power. Using local material and local labor, this prototype can be generated in other sites.

ACEGID - African Centre of Excellence for Genomics of Infectious Diseases

Ede, Osun State, Nigeria

ACEGID. Image Courtesy of MASS Design Group

The African Centre of Excellence for Genomics of Infectious Diseases (ACEGID), a first of its kind on the African continent, is a center that aims to stop epidemics as quickly and effectively as possible. The new genomics laboratory in Ede, Nigeria, outfitted with cutting-edge technology, supports the surveillance, control, and elimination of highly infectious diseases. Estimated to be ready by the spring of 2020, the center, designed to increase collaboration, includes an integrated layout of labs, shared space, offices, and classrooms. Moreover, the building will also showcase the high-tech potential of locally available materials such as stabilized rammed earth walls.

Nyarugenge District Hospital

Kigali, Nyarugenge District, Rwanda

Nyarugenge District Hospital. Image Courtesy of MASS Design Group

The 300-bed hospital, implementing the National Program and Design Standards developed by MASS for Rwanda’s Ministry of Health to guide the creation of several new district hospitals in the coming years, will serve the most densely populated district in Rwanda. The Nyarugenge District Hospital’s first phase will include the implementation of 120 beds along with an emergency department, high dependency unit, operating rooms, labor/delivery, and postpartum wards, adult and pediatric medicine wards, an outpatient clinic, pharmacy, diagnostic imaging, and dentistry.

Redemption Hospital

Caldwell, Montserrado County, Liberia 

Redemption Hospital Caldwell. Image Courtesy of MASS Design Group

In collaboration with the Liberia Ministry of Health, MASS Design Group has been developing a series of healthcare infrastructure initiatives including the master plan and design of the Redemption Hospital in Caldwell. A welcoming, transparent, effective, safe, and dignified setting for care in the wake of the Ebola epidemic, the facility is part of the country’s vision to avert future epidemics and deliver comprehensive services to a growing population. With the first phase including pediatric and maternity services, the two-story, 155-bed facility will comprise the highest quality facility in the country, once completed.

Munini District Hospital

Munini, Nyaruguru District, Rwanda

Munini District Hospital. Image Courtesy of MASS Design Group

Developed for one of Rwanda’s poorest districts, the 300-bed hospital integrates the design standards, developed by MASS for Rwanda’s Ministry of Health. Setting a new standard for referral hospital infrastructure, the Munini District Hospitalreduces the spread of communicable diseases with natural ventilation systems, isolated services, and improved access to hand-washing stations. Strategic openings are put in place facing prevailing winds. The facility includes a maternity suite, with delivery, OR, ICU, and NICU wards to further reduce Rwanda’s infant and maternal mortality rates.

Family Health Center at Virginia Parkway

McKinney, Texas, US

Family Health Center at Virginia Parkway. Image Courtesy of MASS Design Group

The Family Health Center is a patient-centered, medical home designed to create a sustainable model for health through access, connection, and education. Located in McKinney, Texas, a town facing the challenges that come with a rapidly growing community, the facility, in addition to primary medical, behavioral, and dental care services, offers community-oriented student training programs, and onsite programs that link patients to key resources. Inspired by traditional Texan breezeway houses, or “Dogtrot houses”, the design puts in place multiple buildings connected by a breezeway and common roof. With each function housed in a structure, visitors will be able to experience the services individually, while remaining united through shared social spaces inside and out.

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Cite: Christele Harrouk. "Infectious Disease Mitigation: 9 Healthcare Facilities Designed by MASS" 03 Apr 2020. ArchDaily. Accessed . <> ISSN 0719-8884

GHESKIO Tuberculosis Hospital . Image © Iwan Baan


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