Health Facilities Management: Designing the Inclusive Inpatient Room

Advice for design teams on planning spaces to handle medical and behavioral health comorbidities.

VR Inpatient Room Nurse

This is an excerpt from Health Facilities Management.

Health care design communities are steadfastly focused on improving quality, safety, dignity and efficiency in acute psychiatric units. However, as the number of patients with comorbid behavioral health and medical conditions increases, there is growing realization that current room designs fail to meet the multiple needs of this unique population.

Given this mounting challenge, a broad mix of experts, including medical planners, architects, facilities planners, psychologists/psychiatrists, clinicians, nurses and researchers, recently set out to apply an evidence-based approach to creating a new room type — the next generation of universal/inclusive patient room designs — to safely accommodate integrated medical and psychiatric care in the inpatient environment.

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To learn more about inclusive inpatient rooms, visit Health Facilities Management.

About the authors

Shary Adams, AIA, ACHA, EDAC, LEED AP BD+C, is a principal and senior medical planner.

Lou Ann Bunker-Hellmich, EDAC, is a design researcher.

Kara Freihoefer, NCIDQ, EDAC, LEED ID+C, is director of research.

Terri Zborowsky, R.N., EDAC, CPXP, is a design researcher.