In recognition of Mental Health Awareness Month this May, we’ll be publishing three pieces about designing behavioral health spaces. First, in the video below, we spotlight two of our newest projects: UCSF’s Child, Teen & Family Center and Department of Psychiatry Building and Swedish Medical Center-Ballard’s Behavioral Health Unit. Both are advancing the look, feel, and functionality of modern mental health facilities, and challenge long-held notions of what these facilities can and should be.
The results of a new post-occupancy evaluation of the Swedish Medical Center facility – posting to ZGF.com in the coming weeks – shows the impact design can have on the patient experience and patient outcomes.
The demand for behavioral health services has never been more pronounced. The primary driver is a 2008 federal health law that requires insurers to cover mental health at the same level as other types of healthcare. Today, one in five American adults reports suffering from a mental-health condition, and half of all chronic mental illness begins by the age of 14. Despite these statistics, the negative stigmas associated with mental illness, combined with a scarcity of clinicians and facilities, resulted in over half of those with behavioral health conditions forgoing treatment last year. This population is among the most marginalized in the U.S. healthcare system.
As awareness around mental health issues grows, so does the imperative to provide environments that support healing.
At ZGF, we are committed to creating beautiful environments that are safe, friendly, and therapeutic for patients, their families, and healthcare staff.
During the month of May, ZGF is recognizing Mental Health Awareness Month with a series of posts and videos that explore the topic of designing behavioral health spaces.