• Md Haseen Akhtar Department of Design, Indian Institute of Technology, Kanpur, India
  • Janakarajan Ramkumar Department of Design, Indian Institute of Technology, Kanpur, India



Form, Function, mobile Primary Health Center, Healthcare delivery model, Healthcare system, Healthcare Infrastructure Design


A late 19th century principle of design “Form follows function” states that the form of an object must primarily relate to its intended function, is still a debate. As Víctor Papanek, an industrial designer of 20th century and a proponent of “form follows function” once said - “Design must be innovative, highly creative, cross disciplinary which makes it responsive to the needs of the user and this can be achieved with a more research-oriented mindset.” In the context of designing mobile Primary Health Center, this argument has not been discussed in any literature. To address the same gap, this study synthesizes forty mobile health units design and architecture through the lens of form follows function. The main criteria used to evaluate was case study analysis, and five focus group evaluation. Further, the mobile units were scored on form and function on two parameters either existing (1) or not existing (0).  The study examined mobile Primary Health Centers (mPHCs) across the globe through objective and subjective analysis. The results confirmed the hypothesis that Form follows Function at the overall system level but revealed that most sub-systems followed Form first. The recommendations highlight the importance of balancing Form and Function while considering contextual constraints in complex systems like mobile Primary Health Centers (mPHCs) for far flung regions.


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How to Cite

M. H. . Akhtar and J. . . Ramkumar, “DESIGNING MOBILE PRIMARY HEALTH CENTER: DOES FORM FOLLOWS FUNCTION?”, Khulna Univ. Stud., pp. 291–314, Sep. 2023.



Science & Engineering

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