How does the healthcare chapel provide wellbeing for patients, medical staff and the community at large?

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Lawson, Alvis E, Jr.
Angne Alfaro, Sarah M.
Kanakri, Shireen Mohammad
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Thesis (M.S.)
Department of Construction Management and Interior Design
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The role of contemporary healthcare is caring for the whole person: physically, mentally and spiritually (World Health Organization, 2019). The chapel functions as a place to enhance wellbeing through differing religious practices and provides a space for the spiritual care of the individual in healthcare facilities, thus contributing to meeting the needs of the whole person.
Focuses in this research are on appointments that would enhance wellbeing and the understanding of wellbeing as influenced by prayer and concepts of sacredness. Contemporary architectural examples are given to illustrate the present state of the chapel type. Qualitative research methods, including interviews, site observations and document reviews helped to gain a deeper insight into the influence chapels have on the patient, medical staff and community wellbeing. This research impacts the designer of present existing conditions and future possibilities of medical facility chapels. The data analysis reveals the reoccurring themes of a relevant architectural vocabulary with particularities to certain religions while having overlapping functions. The purpose of this research is to examine the architectural environment or design role of the chapel, the chapel’s effect in the process of healing for the patient, medical staff and the community and for the demonstration of the need for meaningful and inclusive sacred spaces within the existing or future healthcare facility.
The findings of the research involve implementing of several key extrapolations when designing for the chapel spaces. The relevance to the design practitioner is the availability of guidelines for the successful impact of the chapel and/or prayer rooms, quiet spaces, meditation spaces and stations upon wellbeing