Looking back to the start of the pandemic is not about filing it away for posterity, applying 20:20 hindsight and apportioning praise or blame. It is vitally important that we apply these hard-won lessons to inform our coping strategies in the face of more frequent epidemics, antibiotic resistance and the impacts of climate change. We need to make healthcare buildings more readily adaptable, and healthcare systems more resilient, and we need to use technology to support and nurture the caregivers who are their lifeblood. We also need to strengthen the links between healthcare and health-creating activities, and address the ways that cities contribute to poor health.
WSP’s global engineering and advisory teams have been working alongside our clients on the immediate response to COVID-19, and on transitioning facilities for the longer term. In this series of articles, published in 2020, we have begun to explore some of the pressing questions that the pandemic raises for the sector — we look forward to continuing these important conversations over the months and years to come.