× You are not currently logged in. To receive all the benefits our site has to offer, we encourage you to log in now.

Designing Hope: Key Principles for Designing Therapeutic and Humane Behavioral Health Environments

Course Description


Behavioral health facilities have historically elevated the need for safety above the comfort of patients. Yet research shows that a calming, homelike setting with access to nature and views decreases stress and agitation and helps patients regulate emotions. This presentation will discuss principles to use that balance patient and safety needs when creating more therapeutic environments. It will include a high-level overview of how the approach to behavioral health facilities
has evolved over time, as well as current research, design principles to create more humane and therapeutic environments, and resources for managing safety in this specialized patient care space.



Learning Objectives: 

  1. Gain an understanding of the history of behavioral health facility design
  2. Learn about principles and concepts for designing therapeutic and supportive behavioral health spaces
  3. Understand safety considerations in the behavioral health environment
  4. List of resources and references useful in the planning and design of behavioral health facilities

Presenter: Tammy Felker, Senior Associate / Healthcare Planner / Healthcare Architect, NBBJ

NIHD Members Only


EDAC Course ID:
March 19, 2020
Class Frequency: