What If Residents Decided How Their Nursing Home Would Run?

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When asked how she feels about living at St. Camillus Health Center in Whitinsville, Mass., her home for 15 years, Alice Hallinan doesn’t hesitate. “I love it very much,” the 96-year-old says. “My daughter wants me to move closer to her, but no way I would leave.”

Universal Design (UD) is an approach to design that increases the potential for developing a better quality of life for a wide range of individuals. It is a design process that enables and empowers a diverse population by improving human performance, health and wellness, and social participation (Steinfeld and Maisel, 2012). It creates products, systems, and environments to be as usable as possible by as many people as possible regardless of age, ability or situation.