Creating typologies for the continuum of care 

WHO Téchne network

Techné is a Technical Science for Health – Network that is coordinated by the WHO in which different partners provide support to frontline workers, including hospital/facility managers, Ministry of Health, and other ministries (civil protection), NGOs, and implementing partners on the ground, by delivering reports for the development, retrofit and refurbishment of buildings for health care where most needed.

Supporting this mission, the Design and Building Sciences Department of the Architecture Institute at TU-Berlin is steering collaborative efforts to launch a practical framework and a collaboration platform that can guide the development of evidence-based reports.

Defining the Continuum of Care

This framework seeks to improve the health of all communities and people beyond hospital buildings, at different environments, settings, and workplaces. It takes in the knowledge, experience, and actual use of buildings and landscapes for care delivery around the globe proven to meet the health needs and requirements of citizens within their specific spatial, socio-economic, and cultural contexts.

A web-based version of the framework depicts three areas in the ‘continuum of care’ at three built environment scales. Through frequent updates, the latest health and design case studies for each scale are made accessible for the general audience to read and for Téchne partners to review and edit.

The case studies we structure undergo an evidence-based design approach that helps validate site specific information on social and health problems, methods, assessment instruments, building specifications employed, and health-related outcomes reached. Summaries are then fashioned to trigger or strengthen partnerships and collaborations towards projects that may gather further evidence.

Building Health

A collaboration platform is also proposed to support the continuum of care framework to call for multiple sectors, institutes, experts, and professionals in health and/or building design, to work together and make knowledge available.

Members are encouraged to participate in lectures, courses, conferences, and transdisciplinary workshops that use case structuring and problem-solving techniques which enable evidence-based design research and building planning. The methods employed, and results attained are discussed and developed into guidelines, standards, procedures, and policies, which are prepared for dissemination with our partner the Cities & Health Journal.

Evidence-based Design Research

whether or not scientific methods are being used to develop physical environments and measure its health-related outcomes. 

Most healing architecture and E-bD practitioners tend to directly apply findings from environmental health and environmental psychology studies to their interventions. The most commonly applied findings are environmental factors such as light, noise, smell, and temperature, which are well-known to affect our overall sense of wellbeing and health. This automated practice is what Kirk Hamilton calls first level practitioners in his 4 level evidence-based practice model. 

Evidence-based Design Research

At our department, E-bD is a working framework that takes in health research and building design together with a transcisciplinary approach. We develop and test methods, tools, and strategies to evaluate how spatial arrangements and design quality improve various health-related outcomes affecting staff, patients, relatives, and visitors.  

For more information on E-bD research for health, our contact person is Alvaro Valera Sosa

environments to build health

Health promotion is the process of enabling people to increase control over, and to improve their health (2). WHO website info here!




Disease prevention

settings to target disease

Disease prevention is a procedure through which individuals, particularly those with risk factors for a disease, are treated in order to prevent a disease from occurring. Treatment normally begins either before signs and symptoms of the disease occur, or shortly thereafter (3).




Clinical care

workplaces to cure disease

Clinical care teams physicians, nurses, physician assistants, clinical pharmacists, social workers, and other health professionals that to establish lines of collaboration, communication, and cooperation that better serve patients’ needs (4).




Evidence-based Design Research collaborative:


Project development

Webpage development

BHL Building Health Lab
Alvaro Valera Sosa: Original draft, Writing-reviewing, Editing, Design, Administration.
Netra Naik: Software, Data curation.
Julia Reißinger: Software, Data curation.

Links and sources

1. Evashwick C. Creating the continuum of care. Health Matrix. 1989 Spring;7(1):30-9. PMID: 10293297.

2. Health promotion. (2019, November 15). WHO | World Health Organization.

3. (n.d.). Nature.

4. Doherty, R. B. (2013). Principles supporting dynamic clinical care teams: An American College of Physicians position paper. Annals of Internal Medicine159(9), 620.