Bringing natural light indoors

At May’s Design in Mental Health 2018 exhibition, Sutton-headquartered Designplan Lighting showed its Basilica Tuneable White luminaire – designed to mimic circadian rhythm, and thus to help speed recovery, particularly in inpatient settings.

The company explained: “During the day, light levels can be raised to give a cool colour temperature to replicate daylight, providing an energy boost that would occur naturally. This cool light is particularly beneficial in areas with little natural daylight. At night the Basilica Tuneable White can lower its output to give a warm colour temperature light so patient observation can be undertaken with minimal

disturbance. In an emergency, clinicians can change light levels at the touch of a button.” With an anti-ligature design, Basilica

Tuneable White has an IK16 rating, and is IP66- rated to ensure dust and water resistance, making it easy to clean. Typical applications for the wall or ceiling-mounted luminaires include bedrooms, corridors, and communal areas. A removable diffuser and gear tray facilitate maintenance, while the luminaire reduces energy consumption both by varying light output and via integrated presence detection, which dims the light level to 10% when a room is not in use. A daylight sensor reduces light levels when there is sufficient natural daylight.

A window to collaborative design

Safehinge Primera has opened a new ‘Design & and Innovation Studio’ at its Blackpool office.

Showcasing its range of doorsets, locksets, handles, and load release products for mental health environments, the showroom has two break-out rooms with large wall-mounted televisions – enabling project teams ‘to get hands-on’ with the company’s products, and then ‘design them collaboratively’.

The ‘grand opening’ coincided with a DIMHN board meeting, held at the Blackpool base on 8 May. In between sessions, Board members explored the new product innovations – providing feedback and sharing insights on current design trends relevant to the products on display. Jenny Gill, the DIMHN’s chair, said: “The Design Studio at Safehinge Primera’s Blackpool office is great. The opportunity to see full-sized products, properly displayed and presented as they would be in situ, is invaluable. It’s much more helpful than trying to assess a product using a small

sample or a mobile set-up. You can get hands-on with the actual items, something hugely advantageous for the specification process.”

Philip Ross, director of Safehinge Primera, added: “Creating a bright, welcoming location to showcase our finished products has been a long-term goal. I’m excited to think this is the first of many sessions we’ll host in Blackpool. The Design Studio complements our prototype and workshop space in Glasgow, where visitors often come to see product testing and early product development.”

VR therapy with ’90% success rates’

Collaboration sees ‘world’s first smart fire door’

Fire door manufacturer, Firedoors, says its recent collaboration with alarm management specialist, Drax Technology, has resulted in the development of ‘the world’s first smart fire door’. The Smart Fire Door ‘promises to improve

safety, while simplifying maintenance and record keeping’. Each door’s unique QR code will incorporate all the information about its specification and history. Specially developed software will enable users to manage all aspects of maintenance, replacement, and compliance, with the code enabling accurate recording and monitoring of wear and tear and ordering of replacement parts when necessary. The system also records an image of each door in situ, helping with identification and installation.


Should any door originally supplied by Firedoors be damaged or develop a fault, an exact replacement can be manufactured, leaving the original in place, with the replacement delivered within 21 days. With a ‘smart’ chip fitted, customers can choose the level of information they wish to receive, including a ‘black box’ feature, with the door’s unique information stored off site, and therefore recoverable in the event of fire, flood, or accidental damage. Users can also generate monthly, weekly, or daily reports, set alarms, monitor door performance to identify any issues before they become a problem, and view a real-time map of all Smart Fire Doors in a building and ensure their compliance.

A psychology clinic on London’s Harley Street claims to be ‘pioneering the way for virtual reality (VR) to be used to treat a range of mental health issues’. The Health Psychology Clinic says its ‘unique approach’, which involves ‘blending VR with more traditional treatment methods’, is seeing it successfully treat 90% of patients ‘across a range of conditions’, and ‘helping to further a new gold standard for the treatment of anxiety and phobia management’. The immersive VR technology, which includes a headset and earphones, ‘submerges patients into an alternate world they can interact with, helping them to confront perceived problems and challenges’. The Clinic said: “When combined with traditional cognitive behavioural therapy and biofeedback, virtual reality boasts an impressive 90% success rate.” (based on an assessment before starting treatment, evaluation during the process, and an evaluation at the end of the 12 therapy sessions).

Joanna Konstantopoulou, a Registered Health Psychologist and founder of the Clinic, said: “Virtual reality is still relatively new, and many of the developments focus on the entertainment industry, but it holds a huge amount of potential for treating mental health disorders. Since we began using it in 2017, we’ve seen exceptional results. As the technology further develops and professionals continue exploring how it can benefit patients, I expect VR to take centre stage.”

Joanna Konstantopoulou says VR technology allows her ‘to create a platform where patients can escape from their worries and break down concerns into manageable chunks, creating better ways of dealing with them’. The technology ‘has also proven vital’ for the treatment of phobias.

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