Your canine patients can transform your practice from calm to chaotic with one yip—and drive your team members from pleasant to harried. Consider these tips to tackle noise during your new construction or renovation.
Your team members are what make your practice run, so give them the tools they need to succeed and to enjoy work. Here's what our veterinary architects have to say about building with your team in mind.
For 34 years, the doctors at Gunbarrel Veterinary Clinic in Boulder, Colo., cared for pets out of an old farmhouse. The building consisted of two exam rooms, a cramped treatment area, and a noisy kennel that shared a wall with an exam room.
"If your clinic stinks, clients may worry that your medical care stinks, too," says Mark Hafen, AIA, an architect with Animal Arts/Gates Hafen Cochrane in Boulder, Colo. "You can't prevent noise and odors from occurring, but you can prevent them from spreading." Hafen, a Veterinary Economics Editorial Advisory Board member, suggests that you:
When people shop for used cars, they kick the tires and check under the hood. When they shop for veterinary services, the evaluation is more subtle. But in both cases, they form lasting opinions based on first impressions. That's why it's critical to minimize noise and odor. Simply put, if your clinic stinks, clients may worry that your medical care stinks, too.
Q. In my practice's kennel and grooming areas, staff members can encounter noise levels OSHA calls damaging. To keep noise from invading other areas, I've contained it in these sections. Short of a major redesign, how can I reduce exposure?