Shield Casework | UCSD Jacobs Medical Center
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UCSD Jacobs Medical Center

About This Project


Cannon Design and Shield Casework first partnered to turn an institutional medical product, the patient headwall, into an architectural element that is as functional as it is beautiful. Seamlessly integrating design and technology, it incorporates physical care and technology infrastructure in a sleek package to create a highly functional finished solution for the University of California, San Diego’s new Jacobs Medical Center.

This project did not set out make a design statement, but instead to use design thinking and research to craft a functional and healing space. Technology is crucial to hospital operations, yet too often it overwhelms the space.

Fitting hundreds of feet of infrastructure into one compact, functional hub was a design and fabrication challenge for this project. The headwall also had to fit stringent healthcare standards for cleaning and use, which make executing the headwall’s compound, curved design difficult, leading to the choice of Shield’s solid surface for its material.

It was essential to ensure this often-touched piece was inherently clean, which is why thermoformed solid surface material covers the entire headwall, down to custom outlet covers that meet the gentle slope of the headwall’s curvature. Nonporous and seamless, the solid surface not only allows the design to be executed as intended but also makes the headwall easy to sanitize and resistant to the spread of pathogens.

This work led Cannon and Shield to partner a birthing center headwall that Cannon designed with scallops that conceal all technology and utilities to create a complete, healing environment. The headwall includes an integrated solid surface bed and bench, enabling the room to be easily cleaned and sanitized. The design is natural and comforting, yet syncs patients with advanced medical technology in mere moments if needed. Shield will also work with Cannon to deliver custom nightstands for the standard patient rooms that match the solid surface curves of the original headwall in a monolithic white treatment.

Product Line

Canopy, Scallop, Custom