Safe, secure and dignified behavioral healthcare
Harriman was engaged to design a new admissions area and inpatient stabilization unit for the evaluation and treatment of new psychiatric care patients at the State of New Hampshire’s Acute Psychiatric Services Hospital. The Harriman team harnessed the opportunity to provide a secure, safe and dignified experience for patients in a fragile psychiatric state.
Intervention at the point of crisis can set the course for recovery. The basis for our work was the contention that people in psychiatric crisis who experience compassionate, respectful, person-centered care are more motivated to follow up with recommended care. The goal was to respect patient and resident dignity, individuality, and privacy without compromising the operational realities of close observation, safety, and security. The design concept surrounds the patient with furniture, furnishings, and fixtures that evoke a residential character and are appropriate from a safety standpoint.
Fostering interaction and community were also important design factors. To facilitate staff interaction and connection with patients and discourage isolation or detachment, all patient rooms have exposure to natural light and open onto a shared and spacious dayroom for a variety of activities. The nurses desk oversees this dayroom and provides direct interaction between patients and staff.