August 14, 2014

Think back to the early 2000s … the technology – or lack thereof – and the manner in which healthcare systems operated. Now fast-forward 14 years and 248,116 votes later. Here, we meet McKay-Dee Hospital in Ogden, Utah, voted America’s Most Beautiful Hospital in 2014 by healthcare staffing company Soliant Health.  

Everything in the world, especially the world of design, is subject to change and development. But, when created with the future in mind, inspired by classical forms and tailored to specific environments, architecture has the potential to be a lasting landmark. 

Applying innovative plans and customization to specific hospital needs resulted in implementation of the following features: 322 beds, a 17-operating room surgery center and private practice medical suites, 690,000 square feet of new hospital space and 150,000 square feet of medical offices. Twelve years later, McKay-Dee Hospital stands proudly as a beautiful, yet functional hub for the Intermountain Health Care System. 

Why did McKay-Dee withstand the test of time?

Integrated office space allows for the ebb and flow of employees and aligned physicians, inpatients and outpatients. “Our goal is to increase quality of care while decreasing costs,” said Mike Hatch, McKay-Dee’s director of strategic planning. “With office space adjacent to clinical space, physicians save time and money, and are able to spend more time with patients. Integration also promotes community, and community heals.” 

Circulation Spine
Imagine knowing where you are and where you are going from the moment you enter the hospital’s sliding glass doors.  Functionally, the circulation spine provides varied expansion and facilitates wayfinding for hospital veterans and new guests. Shortly after the new building opened, it became the place to be, the popular destination for community members. Because of this surge in popularity, McKay-Dee expanded soon after, and the circulation spine facilitated a smooth addition. 

Natural Inspiration
The Wasatch Mountains grace the surrounding landscape and serve as living art – visible through patient windows. The community, patients and staff are able to enjoy the outdoor gardens and walking path. A decade later, these elements have proven effective in patient and staff stress reduction. McKay-Dee is a healing environment. Patients have written to them expressing their appreciation for the new environment, many stating, “it doesn’t feel like a hospital.

McKay-Dee Hospital Most Beautiful 2 - resized

Not only has McKay-Dee Hospital received aesthetic recognition, it’s also is known for its performance quality. It is ranked in the nation’s 100 Top Hospitals® for patient engagement and performance, based on a report by Truven Health Analytics.

HKS is ranked among the top healthcare architectural firms in the world by Modern Healthcare and BD World Architecture. Operating from 27 offices worldwide, HKS focuses on innovative healthcare design, process and delivery. The firm’s award-winning healthcare architecture includes 2,000 unique projects representing 80,000 beds and 184 million square feet. HKS projects have garnered numerous awards and coverage in worldwide publications. The firm’s healthcare specialists are highly respected international speakers.

 For more information, contact Sherri Smith at

Posted in Health
Tagged America's Most Beautiful Hospital, McKay-Dee Hospital, Mike Hatch