Oulu University Hospital

Oulu University Hospital

User-oriented design and strong alliances build World’s Smartest Hospital in Oulu.

Oulu University Hospital (OYS) is one of the five University Hospitals in Finland, and it provides specialised medical care for 750,000 Finns. Fully renovated and rebuilt by 2030, the hospital aims to be the World’s Smartest Hospital through integration of professionals in various fields including health care, hospital design, ICT solutions, engineering, and construction. The vision challenges not only the design and construction of the new facilities, but also the ways the hospital operates and develops its functions.

Master Plan as a platform for long-term development 

In the biggest building project in Northern Finland, new facilities and renewing hospital functions are built to meet the future needs of specialised medical care. 

Hospital designers developed a long-term strategy and master plan for the construction and renewal of Oulu University Hospital. A master plan was prepared in cooperation with the management and personnel of the hospital. The joint work started with planning the renewal of operating models and the development of the Future Hospital concept, aimed to improve the productivity and effectiveness of the hospital’s operations.  

Future space solutions will be constructed to support renewed practices, to improve productivity and the effectiveness of care. The renewed operations emphasise the joint coordination of functions and human, space, and equipment resources as well as digital solutions.

In the mega project, integration of all parties is the key 

Design and construction of the new hospital is conducted by using Integrated Project Delivery (IPD) model. IPD harnesses the talents and insights of all participants to optimise project results and maximise efficiency through all phases of design and construction. 

The project owner, key designers, and contractors form a joint project organisation – sharing the goals, benefits and risks and aiming for continuous improvement. The ambitious project goals are achieved via developing a culture of commitment, transparency, and trust as well as decision making which are best for the project. 

Design for the users, with the users 

To reach the goal of World’s Smartest Hospital, designers and builders are taking full advantage of user-oriented design, virtual technology, and adaptable facilities. Technical features and structures of the facilities are designed to be future-proof – they can be quite easily modified as the requirements change or develop over time.  

Oulu University Hospital focuses strongly on offering patient-centered care. For instance, in designing the new children and women’s hospital, a lot of attention is paid to children having their parents with them during hospital visits.  

One of the focus points for design is occupational wellbeing and flexible cooperation of healthcare professionals. The design methods used are highly interactive and based on the needs of healthcare professionals and their patients. Service design is used as a tool to ensure functionality of the facilities. 

Recycling energy reduces both energy use and emissions 

The ventilation systems of the hospital are designed to maximise energy efficiency and minimise CO2 emissions. To reduce energy usage, energy is also recycled within the hospital. For instance, surplus heat generated by one hospital process is recovered and recycled to where energy is needed. 

Project in numbers:

  • 200,000 m2 of new hospital complex, 600 patient rooms, mainly single rooms 
  • 3–4 projects carried out in stages 
  • Total costs 1.6 billion € 
  • Projected completion: First Stage 2022-2023, Second Stage 2024-2028, Demolition of old buildings 2028-2029

IHDA partners working together in Oulu University Hospital: 

  • Nordic Healthcare Group – Long-term strategy and master plan for the construction and renewal of the hospital area. 
  • AINS Group – Construction management, Supervision, Cost-risk analyses, Risk management, Structural and element engineering, Foundation engineering, Acoustical design, Building information modeling BIM
  • Granlund – HVAC (heating, ventilation, and air conditioning), building automation design, medical equipment design, electrical design, tele and security design, fire safety engineering 


Pekka Narinen 
Chief Operating Officer, AINS Group  
+358 40 500 1411  

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