Written By Lauren Kropf-Zuckerman, Senior Marketing and Public Relations Specialist

When Nina Favata walks through the facilities that make up the Garnet Health, she’s seeking to transform the way we experience healthcare. Through her eyes, she sees possibilities to change space from a clinical feel to one of comfort.

Nina oversees the Healing Environment Program for our healthcare system. As Director of Interior Design and Aesthetics, about 90 percent of her responsibilities result from listening to feedback and requests from our staff pertaining to creating and maintaining a healing environment.

Nina’s vision of a healing environment is one that is both nurturing and therapeutic.

“Creating a universally appealing atmosphere with imagery that evokes the positive feelings of being at home symbolizes comfort to all of us,” Nina says. “There’s a real need for the Program. Aesthetically, we’re building momentum as we continue to connect healing with art.”

Studies have shown that well-designed healthcare environments help reduce a patient’s anxiety and stress, speed up recovery and provide a sense of well-being. They have even been known to help reduce a patient’s need for pain medication.

“When you come here in an emergency situation and have to wait for a period of time, it’s nice to look around. The design, from photos to custom cabinets, tells a story. Some of it even reminds you of home and that helps to make you feel more comfortable.”

– Roberto Vazquez Visitor – Same Day Surgery Waiting Room

Organizationally, when there is an effective therapeutic environment, costs go down because patient outcomes are improved, length of stay may be reduced and staff is more satisfied and productive.

Specific healing design elements within GHVHS’s facilities include:

  • Exposure to nature, such as views to the outside, interior plants, exterior gardens, a sculpture garden and art with a nature theme
  • Soothing colors and textures, natural light, pleasant sounds and cleanliness
  • Reduction of environmental stressors such as noise, glare from lights and poor air quality
  • Comfortable rooms with a home-like feel

These and other elements create surroundings that help calm patients and strengthen their ability to cope and recover. Within GHVHS, we find the same holds true for the well-being of our staff.

For more information on how to help maintain our healing environment, contact Nina at 845-333-2385 or