1. What’s the point of the arts programme?
- The CONNECT art programme will make the hospital environment better for patients, staff and visitors:
- Easier to find your way around – Art will be strategically placed throughout the building to help the public find their way around the large hospital site.
- More welcoming, less intimidating – Visiting the hospital can be a daunting and difficult time for people and a friendlier, more colourful and less institutional environment can make it easier for them.
- Beneficial for health and wellbeing – There is clear evidence of the established benefits to including art in hospitals. See Q2 for more info.
- Better for staff – Improvements to the environment through art benefit staff as well as patients. Staff who like their working environment and find it easy to work in are likely to provide better care. A positive working environment can also play a role in helping to retain staff.
- Good for the local area – The arts programme will provide a legacy to the city by providing a public place to view art from internationally renowned and local artists, as well as creating a sense of civic pride. It is an investment in the City for its residents.
2. What are the clinical benefits of the Public Arts Programme?
- There is evidence of the established benefits to including art in hospitals. Clinical research shows that enhancing the hospital building has a positive effect on reducing patient and visitor anxiety, speeding the recovery process and reducing the need for pain relief medication.
- In January 2011, the BMA’s report ‘The psychological and social needs of patients’ highlighted the significant role the arts can play in patient outcomes concluding that:
- design should have sufficient variety to stimulate the mind and the senses
- users and visitors should feel that the building has a positive character
- art should be integrated into the total experience of the building
- In 2007, the Department of Health published a prospectus looking at the role that arts can play in health. Three key recommendations were that:
- Arts and health are, and should be, firmly recognised as being integral to health, healthcare provision and healthcare environments, including supporting staff;
- Arts and health initiatives are delivering real and measurable benefits across a wide range of priority areas for health, and can enable the Department and NHS to contribute to key wider Government initiatives;
- There is a wealth of good practice and a substantial evidence base.
3. How much does the programme cost?
- The CONNECT Public Art Programme costs £1.1m. This is included in the total £484.7 million cost of building the new hospital.
- £1.1m is 0.22% of the total cost of the new hospital.
- The integration of public art into the 3Ts development is a requirement of the planning permission granted by Brighton and Hove City Council. Their ‘Percent for Art’ Policy formally stipulates a commitment to integrate art into the new development. The CONNECT team are working strategically to offer value for money for that Percent for Art.
4. Where do the artists come from?
- The artists involved in the 3Ts public art programme programme will include national artists, local and emerging artists and also members of our local community.
5. What feedback have you had from staff who will be working in the new hospital?
- Consultation around the development of the Public Art Programme was carried out with both staff and the wider community in 2010 when the project first began. We gained a wide range of useful and interesting insights from the process which were then incorporated into the public art programme.
- Read the full list of suggestions from the UHSussex team and local community.
6. Have you involved the local community?
The theme and name of the 3Ts Public Art programme is ‘Connect’. The CONNECT Public Art Programme will foster connections between the hospital and the local area in many ways, in order to encourage a sense of belonging and community.
We have plans for a range of projects which will directly involve the community, including:
- An ambitious photography project will work with local photographers, community groups and local festivals.
- The Move project will employ local artists to capture, document and explore the changes that are taking place within the hospital.
- A Community Arts Room will be part of the new hospital, where staff, visitors, patients and community groups can meet and take part in creative activities designed to support wellbeing.
- Several projects will work with local artists, including the Wayfinding: Lifts and Corridors programme, which helps people navigate the hospital.
- Permanent exhibition spaces are designed into the new hospital where local artists, schools and community groups can show their work on a changing basis.
- The opening of the new hospital will be marked through an Onward Arts Festival, celebrating creativity and wellbeing and engaging local artists, arts organisations, choirs and community groups.
7. Why not spend the money on medical equipment and staff?
- The Public Art Programme is a condition of the planning permission granted by Brighton and Hove City Council that formally stipulates a commitment to integrate art into the new development. This money is therefore ring fenced to be spent on art.
- There is evidence of the established benefits to including art in hospitals for patients, visitors and local communities. Clinical research shows that enhancing the hospital building has a positive effect on reducing patient and visitor anxiety, speeding the recovery process and reducing the need for pain relief medication.
8. How can you justify spending money on art in the current economic climate?
- Art is an integral aspect to the hospital design because it has been proven to support the patient journey, reduce lengths of stay, increase feelings of positive wellbeing, reduce incidents of violence and aggression and improve the working environment for staff.
- Supporting the staff who care for our patients is also vitally important. The Trust is making the environment in which staff work, the highest quality they possibly can. The new hospital environment will meet the highest possible clinical standards as well as be beautiful to work in. The more supportive and beautiful the working environment, the more staff want to stay and work in it. It makes the team feel more valued and respected.
- If there were no artworks in the new hospital, it would have many blank walls and could feel institutional and unwelcoming.
- Artworks will also be used to help people find their way around.
- We are taking a long-term view and making an investment to create a world class facility which everyone in Brighton and Hove and Sussex can be proud of.
9. Who approved the actual artwork that will be going into the new hospital?
- The Joint Arts Group – the project steering group – has made all the approvals in conjunction with the UHSussex Programme Board.
- The Joint Arts Group was set up right at the start of the project in 2010 to guide and oversee the delivery of the arts programme. Experts in the field (arts consultants Willis Newson), were recruited to lead on the delivery of the new hospital arts programme because of their high level of experience of developing and delivering effective arts projects in healthcare contexts.
- The Joint Arts Group has representation from the Trust, patients, the Local Authority, the developer Laing O’Rourke and the architects, BDP, including:
- Associate Director – 3Ts Programme for UHSussex
- 3Ts Change Consultant for UHSussex
- 3Ts Design Manager – Interiors, Laing O’Rourke
- 3Ts Design Manager – Exterior, Laing O’Rourke
- Director – Willis Newson
- Senior Project Manager – Willis Newson
- Chair of Onward Arts
- Brighton and Hove City Council Arts Development Officer
- UHSussex representative from the Public and Patient Design Panel
- UHSussex Chaplain
- Manager, Economic and Social Engagement in the Arts, University of Brighton
10. What is the Onward Arts programme?
- Onward Arts is the ongoing arts programme of University Hospitals Sussex NHS Trust. Onward Arts uses the arts to improve the experience of patients, visitors and staff and to create a healing hospital environment for all.
- Onward Arts is managed by an Arts Committee, made up of committed volunteers from amongst hospital staff and the wider Brighton and Hove Community. Some have personal experience of being a patient or a carer, others work at the hospital. They all share a commitment to using the arts and creativity to improve the hospital environment and experience of patients, staff and carers.
- Passionate about arts in health, Onward Arts advocates the value of integrating the arts into the culture of the Trust and delivers high quality, patient-centred, arts projects in partnership with the hospital’s local communities.