Building Boxman’s Capacity for the Medical Community


Karen Jones, a veteran of healthcare facilities development recently joined Boxman Studios as a business development manager for medical and channel partners. As the need for nimble, flexible healthcare construction continues, Boxman is adapting to bring facilities to market quickly and at the highest level of quality possible. We sat down to talk with Karen on why she believes Boxman is well-positioned for success in this rapidly changing industry.

Why are modular medical spaces a fit for Boxman Studios’ build philosophy?

The healthcare industry is ever evolving, and it needs nimble construction solutions that allow it to better serve patients. We built our reputation on nimble construction solutions, flexible design process and quick-to-market modular construction. It’s a natural fit. And, as (our CEO) David (Campbell) recently said in a blog post, the company has redesigned its manufacturing to allow for a focus on new verticals and cut down on production time. All of this perfectly positions Boxman to be a key player in the construction of healthcare facilities.

How do construction needs for the medical community differ from other industries?

Like most industries, quality and efficiency are equally important in the medical community; but in this industry, clinics and other facilities must be built to a certain standard in order to meet the technical and structural demands of the healthcare spaces. Also, from wall and floor materials to textiles, surfaces must be easy to clean and durable, so materials selection is about performance as much as it’s about design. If you just think of the number of people that medical facilities serve in a year, it’s easy to understand why the need for longevity of materials exists.

Contrasting with that longevity is the speed at which facilities need to come to market. A doctor’s office or clinic can’t just stop seeing patients to allow for renovation; diagnostic and treatment time can’t be put on hold. So more than any industry, healthcare has to keep construction disruption to a minimum and get new facilities open quickly in order to keep treating patients in a safe environment.

How does modular construction make this possible?

The biggest advantage of modular construction, particularly with Boxman Studios, is that units can be built off-site and brought in for installation without causing the shutdown of an entire facility. Patient care is uninterrupted. What’s more, the impact that speed to market has on the revenue equation is immense, and it’s probably 60 to 70 percent of why hospitals and other healthcare facilities end up selecting modular units for construction projects.

What types of medical facilities are best suited for modular construction?

Modular construction is appropriate for a wide range of modalities, it just depends on what the healthcare provider is looking for and how quickly they need to open a new facility. For many in healthcare, the idea of smaller clinics is a place of interest. It’s a fit for larger hospitals, too. When you think of a large hospital campus, construction has to take place in phases and is planned out years in advance. But as a hospital grows, the need for administrative offices, expanded lab space, MRI or other diagnostic facilities and specific therapy offices also grows and needs to be addressed quickly. With modular construction, these types of facilities can be added in only a few months, allowing medical providers to expand their abilities and the number of patients they can help.

It sounds complicated. What does it take to build for this market?

There are only a few modular manufacturers that have the ability to create permanent medical-grade structures, and Boxman Studios is one of them. Boxman builds using all steel components, giving their modules more durability for the demanding healthcare environment. There is also a team of craftsmen at Boxman making high-quality cabinets, counters, storage pieces and other components crucial for medical facilities. And all Boxman units are finished with high-grade materials — a range of finishes that are in line with medical facility needs for durability and cleanability.

Another consideration for building for the healthcare market is cost certainty. Costs need to be clear and the project must stay on budget. That begins with the design process; it should be comprehensive with all the phases of the project laid out clearly from the beginning so there isn’t a need for costly change orders at the end that increase the overall budget.

What about the future of modular construction and the medical world?

The need will always exist in healthcare to be one step ahead and have a contingency plan. As healthcare continues to evolve, we believe modular construction will play a bigger role in the construction of facilities to meet community needs. And because medicine and science change so rapidly, there’s always the possibility that a new treatment will be discovered that needs an entire facility built around it, and quickly. That is one of the things that makes healthcare and modular construction such a perfect pair — the speed with which they evolve and provide solutions.