The Swedish Health Promoting Healthcare network and the built environment
Journal article, 2022

The Health Promoting Hospitals (HPH) networks, founded by the World Health Organisation, support the introduction of health promotion in healthcare. This development involves the creation of a health promoting built environment. However, few studies have explored the HPH in relation to the built environments, and it is unclear how HPH-networks incorporate the built environment in their work. The study therefore examined the Swedish HPH-Network in relation to the built environment. The mixed-method study included data from (i) key online material from the Swedish network, (ii) a survey with open-ended questions of representatives of the networks’ workgroups and (iii) semi-structured interviews with the built environment workgroup. The study showed that the built environment is unevenly and incoherently incorporated in the network. Moreover, there is more attention for healing and healthy rather than health-promotive strategies, indicating a knowledge gap. Descriptions of the health promoting built environment are diverse, and address design features, design strategies or indicate places for health promotion interventions. The descriptions of the built environment are combined with various HPH goals and population groups. To utilize the built environment as a resource for HPHs, the networks should consider incorporating the built environment in documents and action plans at all organizational levels.

healthcare facilities

health promoting environments

built environment


health-promoting hospitals


Elke Miedema

Chalmers, Architecture and Civil Engineering, Architectural theory and methods

Göran Lindahl

Chalmers, Architecture and Civil Engineering, Building Design

Marie Elf

Dalarna university

Health Promotion International

0957-4824 (ISSN) 1460-2245 (eISSN)

Vol. 37 1 1-11 daab101

Integrative Ways of Residing: Health and Quality of Residence Architectural Inventions for Dwelling, Ageing and Healthcaring AIDAH

Formas (244-2013-1835), 2013-11-12 -- 2019-12-31.

Subject Categories

Health Care Service and Management, Health Policy and Services and Health Economy



Public Health, Global Health, Social Medicine and Epidemiology

Driving Forces

Sustainable development

Areas of Advance

Health Engineering





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