Concept: Fare2Care
Firm: SmithGroup
Team representatives: Y Pham, interior designer; Kenta Kamei, architectural and urban designer; Satish Atkari, associate, architectural designer; TJ Howells, architectural designer; and Stephen Parker, architect and planner

The challenge: Many Americans forego primary care because of how inconvenient it is, thanks to long waits, frequent cancellations, and time away from work. Additionally, individuals living in economically stressed urban areas might be more than 5 miles away from the nearest clinic or health center, with densely populated areas suffering from higher rates of disease and premature death from preventable conditions.

The concept: Fare2Care ideates “care cars” that can attach to public trains in any city across the 8,000 miles of metro rails in the U.S. Patients would visit the care cars to access primary care during their regular commutes, a solution to provide healthcare services where people are. The cars are integrated with technology to streamline the experience and offer a comprehensive telehealth experience, unless immediate intervention is required.

The details: Using San Francisco’s BART system as an example, about 600 primary care modules could be accommodated on its fleet, resulting in 12,000 appointments available each day in addition to the ability to conduct mass health screenings, vaccinations, etc. The Fare2Care system could even detect elevated temperatures of patients inside a transit station and send alerts to seek care.

In fact, it’s that type of technology integration that fuels the solution, including an app that patients would use to book appointments, look up data on previous visits, or see an upcoming care car schedule. Notifications remind patients of appointments, with smart sign systems within stations guiding you on where to go. Internal technology in the cars themselves provide a screening system and three layers of security, while solutions like UVC light and HEPA filtration as well as automated cleaning systems address infection control.