Interview with Perkins&Will
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Perkins&Will has welcomed a new health practice leader to its New York studio. Laura Morris brings over 20 years of experience to the firm, delivering both healthy buildings and communities throughout her career. Laura tells SEAB about her new role and her thoughts of designing future hospitals in the pandemic. With decades of design leadership experience, Morris has contributed to a variety of notable healthcare projects. During her time at Perkins&Will, Morris’ contributions included John Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore, Maryland, Einstein Medical Center in Pennsylvania, and the Lucille Packard Children’s Hospital in Palo Alto, California. 

SEAB: Congratulations! You will be joining the studio both as a health practice leader as well as associate principal. What are your job responsibilities?   

LAURA: My new role will involve making sure our teams provide exceptional service to our clients while helping bring their project vision to reality.  I will also help lead our office’s efforts to guide clients during this time of evolution for the health industry at large.

SEAB: How are you planning to do that?

LAURA: We will be partners with our clients to understand their changing demands, help them create a plan for the future of patient care while understanding the current economic and environmental impacts of today.  

“I’m thrilled to be returning to Perkins&Will - a firm who continues to deliver healthcare facilities rooted not only in elevating the patient experience, but the experience of caregivers and families as well.

Now more than ever, delivering truly resilient health facilities demands empathy, critical thinking and a long-term lens. I’m excited to work with a team of experts who celebrate this ethos with each and every project,” said Laura Morris.

SEAB: How will the pandemic change the design of hospitals in the near future? 

LAURA: Our hospitals will all look at pandemic planning in new ways for the patients, but Covid has brought the issue of staff shortages and burnout to a breaking point.  Hospitals will need to look inward to how their facilities can be places of healing for the patients as well as their employees.  Making sure we have spaces for decompression and respite, services to help provide guidance and support, and amenities to help with hiring and retention.  We will help our clients plan for this normal.