Public Living Rooms and the NHS

Creating the conditions for more human connection in hospitals

We know that hospitals are stressful and emotive places. Places where people go when they’re having a tough time. There’s a whole array of emotions going on in these places and pressures on our NHS are greater than they’ve ever been.

At the moment, we think it’s fair to say there’s a continual demand on NHS services across the UK. As a result of these complex and challenging times for our country’s most trusted social institution, the NHS has seen a decrease in patient experience and staff wellbeing scores. We think our Public Living Room innovation can help.

In July 2017, we partnered with Blackpool Teaching Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, where we tested our first Public Living Room in a hospital. Beyond the cosy sofas and twinkly fairy lights, we created a space that encouraged human potential for empathy, which promoted the power of mutual support through tough times.

After receiving hundreds of stories from people (including surgeons, nurses, patients, relatives, the baristas in Costa, to name a few), we saw the overwhelming effect a Public Living Room can have on social connection, whilst redressing the power of fixing in hospitals.

We’re now on a mission to create more conversation, more connection, and more mutual aid in our hospitals. The plan is bold and we can’t do it alone so we’re looking for innovation partners.
If this fires you up and you’d like to explore how we can support you to bring about more meaningful connections in your hospital, get in touch with Izzy on 07503 149 230 or

A short animated film from the Tipi

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