Barbara Huelat Develops New Healing Color Palette for LG HI-MACS

LG HI-MACS introduces 15 colors selected by Barbara Huelat for their new Healthcare Collection.  The 15 colors have been found to be the most suitable for healthcare environments.  In addition, the collection tells a story.

Garden Stone Collection

“The conscious stone to beauty grew” – Emerson

Zen Gardens are both peaceful and playful.  These are healing environments specifically designed to provide peace, serenity and escape from stress of daily life.  They are environment to reflect, seek inner peace and support healing.  Unlike other typical gardens that feature flowers, Zen gardens feature stones.  These stones are considered the “Soul” of the garden and represent nature’s elements.

Exploring nature’s themes for healing environments, this collection of “Soul Stones” offers 15 solid surface stones that are inspired by Zen healing garden.

The soul stones designed specifically for healthcare environments provide five palettes. The Root Stones of Harmony, Balance, Simplicity  and Natural   the essence of the healing environment principles allowing designers to create healing spaces.

Japanese Zen gardens actually have very little plant material. There is no pond and no river. It represents the Zen Buddhist philosophy and helps in meditation. It also teaches the principles of the religion. Materials usually consist of rock, gravel, sand and maybe some moss. Ryoanji is the Zen temple most famous for its rock garden. Stones are more important to the Japanese than trees. Rocks may be handed down from generation to generation.

In Zen gardens of all kinds stone is the major element. There are three types of Japanese Zen gardens. The Tsukiyama or hill garden, the Karesansui or dry garden and the Chaniwa or tea garden which is built for the tea ceremony. All of these gardens incorporate rocks.

The idea of a Zen garden is simplicity of design. This adds dignity and grace to the Japanese garden. Everything placed in  the garden symbolizes something. Rocks represent a sense of power and desire or can symbolize a feeling of tranquillity, depending on the shape of the rock.

Soul Stones 1

There are five classes of stone shapes. The taido is a tall vertical rock, the reisho is low vertical, the shigyo is arching, the shintai is flat and the kikyaku is reclining. Each shape is carefully chosen and placed to create an idealized conception of nature along with the artistic feeling of the creator.  The new “Garden Stone Healthcare Collection” invites designers and architect to create their own healing garden to support healing.




Barbara National Speaking Engagements


Barbara Huelat presents “Healing Environments for Home Work & Play”  accross the country with Design Arts Seminairs.  It is a 8 hour class with 8 AIA & IDEC CEU’s.  The topic deals with healthy building concepts that can be integrated into all building types.  See Guest Speaking, Lectures & Seminars for full details on the next class near you.  You can also visit Design Arts Seminairs at for full couse details and regristration.

Taking the Pulse of Ambulatory Care

For over 30 years Ambulatory Care Environments have been a major force in patient care delivery.   Today’s drivers of new technology, less invasive procedures, the affordable care act, and consumer demands, are transforming these environments right out of the box.


Ambulatory Care delivery is spilling out to diverse places and spaces.  Medical advice is as close as your smart phone, flu shots are available down the street at the drug store, clinics are popping up in discount department store, cancer screening is now traveling to your church in a mamovan and E-med is no longer science fiction but a reality.  In addition we are seeing a new delivery model of specialized clinics in strip malls and even wellness campuses providing a full spectrum of outpatient care. Furthermore, the Veteran Affairs Department is developing the Medical Home and Telemedicineand it is all happening with lightning speed.  Outpatient surgeries have increased by two thirds since 2006. Nearly 75% of elective surgeries are performed as outpatient procedures, and it is not stopping there.

What is behind this transformation? Is this a trend or fad?  What does this mean for the healthcare design community? This webinar investigates the diversity of these environments, the drivers behind this exponential growth, the players and what the design implications are.

The Speakers:

Barbara J. Huelat, FASID, EDAC, AAHID
Design Principal, Huelat Parimucha Healing Design

Barbara J. Huelat, design principal at Huelat Parimucha is nationally recognized for work in evidence based healthcare design and serves as a healing environment consultant to healthcare facilities, product manufacturers, academia, institutions and the architectural design community.  Her three decades of design experience cover virtually all types, components and sizes of domestic and international healthcare facilities.  She currently leads the architectural and interior design studio at Huelat Parimucha. Projects include; design research with ER One, diverse ambulatory care environments such as clinical settings with George Washington University Medical Faculty Associates, hospital design, planning with Sentra and Medstar systems as well as  multiple Planetree projects with the Department of Veteran Affairs.

Ms. Huelat is the author of Healing Environments and Design for the Body Mind and Spirit. She is a popular speaker who lectures frequently and publishes articles on healing environments as well as a diverse spectrum of healthcare design topics.

Ms. Huelat completed her undergraduate work at Harrington Institute of Design with continuing studies in the Divisional Masters Program at the University of Chicago.  She is Evidence Based Design, AAHID Certified, license to Practice Interior Design, and certified with the Planetree Visionary Design Network.

American Society of Interior Designers, the American Institute of Architects, American Society of Healthcare Engineers, Planetree, and the Center for Healthcare Design has honored Barbara and her exceptional work with numerous design awards.

Barbara’s extensive knowledge as well the firm’s extensive work in ambulatory care and patient centered design, provides the basis for this webinar.

Frank Willcoxon, AIA Associate, AAH
Project Manager, Huelat Parimucha Healing Design

Frank heads the transformational architectural group at Huelat Parimucha Healing Design, as well as managing disciplines such as interior design, MEP, structural engineering and Cost Analysis. He leads and manages the firm’s VA projects as well as a diverse range of architectural ambulatory projects as well. Frank’s expertise in outpatient environments has led to the firm’s continued success with George Washington University’s Medical Faculty Associates, designing  over 51 outpatient environments.  GWMFA is a leading ambulatory care provider with over 900 physicians and researchers.  Medical specialists see patients at their main campus at George Washington University, as well as Howard University, Sibley Memorial, Suburban and Inova Alexandria Hospitals, Reston Hospital Center, Shady Grove Adventist Hospital, Washington Adventist Hospital and an international site in the Middle East.  GWMFA’s diverse specialties range from diagnostic clinics, research offices, labs, central administration, to the recently completed mamovan department and E-Medicine group for 55 physicians.

Frank, with nearly 14 years of experience received his architectural degree from the New School of Architecture and Design, San Diego, California.  Before working at Huelat Parimucha, Frank was with Niles Bolton Associates as a Project Architect designing high rise and multiple family housing.

Franks extensive knowledge of codes extends to these specialty outpatient settings. This webinar integrates Frank’s working relationship with the VA’s transformational model of patient centered design with his technical expertise that are required when special medical needs are integrated to the non-medical space.

About Huelat Parimucha Healing Design and Ambulatory Care Environments

For over 20 years, Huelat Parimucha has created diverse and award-winning outpatient care spaces that have set benchmarks in Ambulatory Care.  The firm has achieved meaningful results, contributed to cost savings and received national recognition by putting the patient first.

Our talented professionals are devoted to the healing environment mission by delivering high performance, evidence based designs that are flexible and lean.  The success of these projects is based upon:

  • Leverage of “lean”  principles
  • Knowledge and experience in visionary ambulatory concepts
  • Adapting medical spaces in diverse places
  • Address boutique, retail and mobile needs
  • Evidence based design and best practices
  • Planetree, patient centered and listens to the consumer
  • Sustainable
  • Exceeds client expectations
  • Improve outcomes

For more information please contact Barbara Huelat at or

Huelat Parimucha Healing Design
653 South Fairfax Street,
Alexandria, VA 22314

Visit our website

The Future of Ambulatory Care – Innovating the Future

The Advisory Board – Presentation and Expert Roundtable
May 17, 2013
MedStar Institute for Innovation, Washington, DC

SNVMC_Vascular LabHealth demographics, economics, competitive forces and legislation are all driving a reassessment of the optimal utilization of ambulatory care.  Patient conveniences and quality are now a given.  Further exploration of more specialized and advanced services as well as the patient experience will continue to define ambulatory care in the future.  Can these facilities also be the cornerstone of wellness initiatives and a platform on which to change fee for services to population based yet “personalized” healthcare?  This half-day symposium framed and explored  questions of how design can optimize the future goals of ambulatory care.

Michael Hubble, PhD from the Advisory Board Company delivered a compelling overview on the current state of ambulatory care.

The expert panel was composed of Robert Gilbert, President of MedStar Ambulatory Care with a focus on the hospital without beds, Pete Celano, Mobile Health consultant focused on healthcare solutions technology and Barbara Huelat represented the Voice of the Consumer.

“We have seen dramatic changes in this transformational environment.  Although we identify many drivers of change, I would like to focus on the “Voice of the Consumer” as a primary driver for this change,” remarked Ms. Huelat.  “The patient is no longer a patient they are consumers of healthcare products and are demanding much more from service providers.”

The voice of the consumer is speaking out today demanding change in access to healthcare, conveniences and basic dignity.  Consumer movements are powerful, take the example of how women’s groups in the “60’s change the way babies were brought into this world.  The movement transformed birthing from a medical procedure to a celebratory milestone of life with the development of Birthing Centers, awaking the practice of midwifery and natural birthing options.  Another grass roots movement is in Hospice care, demanding dignity for the dying that led to the non-institutional movement.  Both of these successful consumer movements grew out of a need to change the existing medical model into one that is more human centered.

Today I see consumers demanding changes in the way they access healthcare services and more importantly wellness products. They want convenient locations and after hour times that work for busy fast paced schedules.  People are not willing to wait nine hours to be seen in the ED, they want good reliable information quickly in order to make good decisions for their families and themselves.

Today’s consumers want integrated care, not just when they get sick, but also preventive care.  They want the whole array of wellness products – nutrition counseling, weight control, cease smoking program, stress management, massage therapy, pain management, acupuncture and exercise council.  People want it to be fun, quick, easy to use and affordable.

These “demands” are resulting in a change to the physical environments, making a great impact on architecture and design, such as:

  • Convenient locations – retail settings – the minute clinic, medical mall
  • Mobility and access – clinics on wheels – mamovans
  • Reaching the consumer in remote locations such as the medical home and telemedicine
  • Access to care for all – the Affordable Care Act
  • Integrated wellness within medical care
  • Central service – pharmacy, radiology, specialty clinics
  • Urgent care – shorter wait times
  • Outpatient surgery
  • Attractive environment – retail setting, easy access, parking, one stop shop

Consumer driven healthcare design is not looking for opulent places, but environments that support ones journey to health and wellness. This can be achieved with access to information, ease of wayfinding, privacy, comfort, access to nature, food and most importantly with respect for the person and their family.  They want and need to be treated as a fellow human being.

“The time is right and it is now, the Affordable Care Act is in place, fee for service is no longer sustainable, Americans are becoming more obese with declining health, and the consumer is now speaking out.  It is difficult to predict just how ambulatory care will play out in the future, but we do know that it will be pioneered by the voice of the consumer,” concluded Ms. Huelat.