Located on the Eastern Virginia Medical School campus in Norfolk, Virginia, the Lawrence J. Goldrich Institute for Integrated NeuroHealth is a brand-new clinic and program dedicated to providing comprehensive, multidisciplinary care for patients suffering from neurodegenerative diseases, such as Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s disease, and individuals in need of palliative care. The new clinic gives EVMS a state-of-the-art facility that provides a positive experience for healthcare professionals and patients.  

Established in 2020, the Goldrich Institute was made possible through the generous donation of Lawrence J. Goldrich and his wife, Janice T. Goldrich. The first center of its kind in Hampton Roads, the project included a renovation of the entire fourth floor of Andrews Hall, providing clinic spaces for healthcare providers and patients and administrative spaces for staff. In addition to the Goldrich Institute, the fourth-floor renovation included research and administrative offices for the Glennan Center for Geriatrics and Gerontology.   

“The Clark Nexsen team ensured that we received excellent services for our project and the build-out of the new facility enabled the new NeuroHealth practice to deliver top-notched patient care to our clients. Our patients continuously applaud the beautiful aesthetics of the facility and the ease of functionality for our staff and patients.” 

Lawrence R. Ford, PhD, NREMT, Practice Manager, EVMS Goldrich Institute for Integrated NeuroHealth 

The new clinic placed a strong focus on delivering a positive patient experience. Wide exam rooms were built for increased capacity and mobility, providing room for patient aids such as wheelchairs and leaving enough space for individuals who might accompany the patient. Each exam room has a strong collaboration zone, enabling doctors to easily communicate with patients and their caregivers or family. This “zone” not only provides physicians with a space for charting but also creates a space for a separate monitor to be placed on the wall, allowing doctors to share MRI scans, test results, and other information directly with the patient. Additionally, to further help EVMS medical staff, every exam room has a gait lane in the middle of the space. This gait lane allows doctors to observe how a patient walks, providing critical insights into their mobility and the condition(s) they might have.  

A gait lane is available in every exam room, allowing doctors to assess patients and provide diagnoses.

With Andrews Hall mainly being glass, it provided an opportunity to pass natural light from the exam rooms into the clinic space. This was accomplished by installing frosted doors and glass panels, allowing light through the clinic’s interior while maintaining patient privacy and confidentiality. The renovation of the fourth floor also considered the type of patient that would visit the clinic. For example, handrails are placed throughout the clinic to assist those who need extra support. Color was used to differentiate spaces and provide more accessible wayfinding. Even the design of the wallcoverings was considered. EVMS advised against a wallcovering that patients could fixate on, so the clinic used one that conveyed water and water movement, introducing nature elements without being too specific.  

The project used the above wallcovering designs, which conveyed nature elements such as water movement while being broad enough to be appropriate for the patient population.

Since the Goldrich Institute is an operational clinic, a high level of infection control is needed. This meant using hard, non-porous surfaces throughout the clinic space, which are easier to clean and disinfect than other materials. Despite this focus, the Clark Nexsen team found plenty of opportunities to incorporate design details that reflect the quality of the clinic and the cutting-edge care that patients will receive. Contrasting accent ceilings greet the visitors as they enter the clinic from the elevator, inspired by the contrasting hemispheres of the human brain. Warmer wood slats don a queuing zone while a backlit perforated metal panel wraps over the reception desk, juxtaposing the brain’s primary functions while providing visual interest and supporting EVMS branding. 

Since its opening, the Lawrence J. Goldrich Institute for Integrated NeuroHealth has provided high-quality care to patients across Hampton Roads and Virginia. The project has been received well by staff and patients, who note that the clinic brings together the original vision of the space while balancing the needs of stakeholders, healthcare professionals, and staff. Thanks to its world-class healthcare team, the Lawrence J. Goldrich Institute for Integrated NeuroHealth is poised to help patients across the region for generations to come.