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Decompression Space in Behavioral Health Design

Behavioral health crisis stabilization units relieve pressure on emergency 
department resources while providing a specialized care area for patients in need

By Scott Hansche,AIA and Hannah Roush, AIA
Heery Design – A SLAM Studio – Iowa City

Thanks to the ease of access to healthcare professionals, hospital emergency departments (EDs) have become a primary location where behavioral health patients seek help when their conditions require immediate care. However, EDs are generally designed and operated to treat only a small number of behavioral health patients at a given time. As behavioral health patient counts and severity of conditions increase, ED resources such as beds and staff are quickly depleted, causing many facilities to have larger capacity issues and longer wait times to provide emergency attention to all patients. One emerging solution is the creation of specialized behavioral health crisis stabilization units (CSUs). These separate units in a hospital are designed and staffed to treat patients with emergency behavioral health conditions and are proving to increase the operational safety, efficiency, and healing outcomes of this growing population by providing the proper environment of care.

Read more via the online article at Healthcare Design Magazine.

This article was published by Healthcare Design Magazine in the June/July 2020 edition.

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