The Ratamo Centre offers flexible and accessible healthcare and social services.
The Ratamo Centre in Kouvola, Finland provides a wide range of social and health services for the inhabitants of the area. Designed according to the Finnish social and health services reform, Ratamo delivers easy-access wellbeing services, from basic healthcare and hospital services to dental care, maternity, and child health clinics as well as mental health and rehabilitation services.
Healthcare and social services change over time – as do Ratamo’s facilities
One of the main drivers in designing Ratamo was the need for straightforward usability and navigation within the facilities. The design is systematic – the rooms are very similar in their interior solutions and functionalities which makes it easy for the staff to orientate.
In the future, this universal approach and the recurrence of the facilities will make modifying and expanding faster and much more cost-effective. As there are very few impeding fixed structures in Ratamo, re-locating and adding different functions is easy.
The focal point is the high lobby with a glass ceiling that runs through the deep-framed building. The lobby lets in plenty of natural light. In conjunction with the light tones and oak surfaces used in the interior, Ratamo feels bright and airy.
Saving costs and emissions during the whole lifecycle of the centre
The Ratamo project was successfully cost-controlled. Cost-efficiency was taken into consideration both in the design and construction phase, as well as in mapping future maintenance and reducing operational costs along the lifecycle of the building.
The energy solutions in Ratamo also focus on decreasing emissions and energy costs. Most of the energy used by the centre comes from renewable sources. Energy-efficiency affects all design solutions – both architectural and technical. For example, the architectural protrusions of the building are also functional and can be used to enhance ventilation or air-conditioning.
Photo by Tuomas Uusheimo
Project in numbers:
- health and social services centre for nearly 90,000 inhabitants in the area
- services include e.g. reception, emergency services, imaging, laboratories, rehabilitation
- located in Southeast Finland
- completed in early 2022
- project size 20,400 m2
- client Kymsote-Kiinteistöt Ltd
IHDA partners working together in the Ratamo project:
- AW2 Architects – Main design and architectural design
- Granlund Group – HVAC and electrical design, building lifecycle design
Reforming Finnish public healthcare and social welfare services
In Finland, public healthcare and social services include, for example, primary and specialised healthcare, hospital services, dental care, maternity and child health clinics, rehabilitation as well as mental health and substance abuse services.
Residents must have equal accessibility to public healthcare and social services, no matter where in Finland they live. Also, the aging population increases the need for healthcare and social services, which in turn means that the growing costs must be cut back.
In a historically substantial administrative reform, services previously organised by hundreds of municipalities – big and small alike – were centralised to 21 wellbeing services counties from January 1, 2023 onwards.
Healthcare and social services in these counties are situated according to local requirements – as ideally as possible for easy access. Local centres providing social services and healthcare play a key role in the reform, functioning as hubs combining an extensive scope of healthcare and social welfare services to best serve the needs of the communities. Improved digital services help provide effective and flexible care, benefiting both patients and healthcare professionals.
Ministry of Social Affairs and Health – stm.fi, Wellbeing services counties
Official website of the reform – soteuudistus.fi
Principal designer, AW2 Architects
+358 40 861 3740
Vice President, Granlund Group
+358 50 067 5654