On Tuesday, Oct. 7, Seattle Children’s Hospital unveiled its new Psychiatry and Behavioral Medicine Unit to families and hospital staff members during an open house.
The new 25-bed unit, designed with input from families, will open to patients later this month and will feature single-patient private rooms, a classroom, group spaces, a dining area and an exercise area and recreation area. When the unit is fully completed in spring 2015, it will double the hospital’s current capacity, allowing Seattle Children’s to better serve children in the region in need of inpatient mental health services.
“The entire space was designed with patient and family input, as well as input from staff members, to ensure the utmost comfort and safety for our patients as well as those caring for them,” said, director of and program director of .
Top features of the new unit
Family Reception Area – a welcoming space for patients and families at the entrance of the unit.
Classroom Space – the new unit will include a classroom to help patients stay caught up on their schoolwork while they are in the unit. It will also allow treatment teams to observe and evaluate kids for diagnoses, medication and behavioral intervention.
Comfort Room – designed to offer patients a soothing and calming environment, the comfort room offers a space to help reduce patient stress.
Single-Patient Rooms – private rooms offer a space for a child and caregiver to stay overnight. The rooms are also equipped to serve patients with unique medical needs.
Group Room – the group room is a space where therapy groups can be conducted to help patients work on coping skills and to learn to manage emotions and stressful situations.
Living Rooms – a place where kids can hang out with friends or family members.
Dining and Social Area – specifically designed for patients with autism spectrum disorders (ASD), this space can also be used for social activities.
Designed with input from families
“It was an honor to provide perspective on behalf of patients and families,” said Melissa Aydelott, a parent on Seattle Children’s Family Advisory Board, who was involved in the design process. “We wanted to make the space feel like a hospitable hospital. From the furniture to the color scheme, our opinions were always taken into account. We put ourselves in the shoes of future patient families and thoughtfully decided on what would be best for them.”
Phase 2 of the inpatient expansion will include an additional 16 patient rooms as well as a community space and outdoor porch.