Development of a SOuth HOlland SAfe BAthroom for health care centers; from the perspective of the patient and the microbes. The SOHO-SABA study.


Patients in health care centers (HCC) are exposed to dangerous environments. Excluding the rooms where invasive procedures are performed, the bathroom is one of the rooms which needs special attention regarding safety. No one would argue against the fact that bathrooms should not be a risk for the patient in respect to falling and infection. Furthermore, the bathroom is a general and indispensable room in al HCCs. On arrival of the hospital, patients expect that the bathroom does not impose an extra risk on their health. Recommendations generated by the this study should be implementable and not too costly.


A blueprint for the design, layout and materials of a (microbial) safe bathroom (interior and exterior) for health care centers.


This study has three work packages; 

  1. Designing the optimal size and inventory to maximally prevent falling.
  2. To select materials which are not slippery, will not deteriorate over time by use and disinfection, and do not persistently contaminate with bacteria
  3. To design the optimal design and material of a sink and shower which has a minimum risk on contamination of a patient


1. An understanding of the relationship between bathroom dimensions, lay-out and inventory and  fall prevention
2. A weighted choice for materials to be used in the bathroom
3. A sink with a proven low risk on contamination with pathogenic bacteria of the touchable surface/area

These three above leads to a (microbial) safe bathroom to be applied in HCCs

In future; this blueprint will be extended to other relevant high risk areas of a hospital; like operation theatre, single beds or open wards, invasive procedure rooms etc. The product will be a guideline to be implemented by hospital architects, contractors and corporate real estates.


This project is funded by the LDE Centre for Safety and Security (2017).


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