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Supporting the Healthcare Design Industry

Gold Partner of the American Academy of Healthcare Interior Designers

Gold Level Sponsor AAHID

We’ve enhanced our visibility within the AAHID by increasing our investment with the organization.  As a Gold level partner, we believe Certified Healthcare Interior Designers are an important asset to the industry as they understand healthcare design challenges and work towards enhancing the health, quality and safety of healthcare interior environments.  Stance Healthcare and the AAHID are both committed to transforming the healthcare environment into one for healing, improving outcomes and maximizing efficiency.

About AAHID
AAHID is a nonprofit organization committed to the development and administration of the only certification program for healthcare interior designers. It is not a membership organization, but rather an organization that board-certifies interior designers in the U.S. and Canada that specialize in acute care, ambulatory care, and residential care facility design.

5 Behavioral Health Educational Sessions You’ll Want to Attend at HCD 2018

This year  Healthcare Design Expo + Conference is taking place in Arizona at the Phoenix Convention Center in Arizona. Seeing that we are a company located North of the border, we’re certainly looking forward to this event! You’ll find us at booth# 835 encouraging you to try the sit of our new Kite Metal Folding Chair and giving away adorable coloring books. Did you know coloring can reduce stress and anxiety levels?

While at the conference, you’ll also want to catch one of these 5 sessions focused on designing for Behavioral Health:

E01: Psychiatric Ward Design Can Reduce Aggressive Behavior
Sunday, November 11th, 9:30 AM – 10:30 AM

This presentation describes a design theory proposing that aggression in psychiatric facilities can be reduced by designing the physical environment with several evidence-grounded stress-reducing features. The theory was tested in a newer hospital in Sweden having wards with nearly all the features. Clinical data on aggressive behavior, compulsory injections, and physical restraints were compared with data from an older facility that had only one stress-reducing feature. Aggression levels were lowest in the newer facility, as evidenced by reductions in compulsory injections and physical restraints. The research suggests that designing better psychiatric buildings using reasoned theory, the best available evidence, and dialogue with informed clinical staff can reduce the major safety threat posed by aggressive behavior.

A12: Institute for Patient-Centered Design Educational Session – Behavioral Health Innovation
Sunday, November 11, 1:45 PM – 2:45 PM

This session will explore research and development of a behavioral health patient room, in which facility designers not only focused on the space, but they redesigned each component of the room to create a safer, more patient friendly solution.

I05: Safety for All: Keeping Patients and Staff Safe in Behavioral Health
Sunday, November 11, 1:45 PM – 2:45 PM

Mental health awareness is on the rise and there is a is a marked increase in patients presenting at emergency departments who require treatment for mental health issues. This unique patient population has very specific needs and requires environments that are safe for both the patient and the staff. This roundtable will review two case studies of built behavioral health areas within the existing emergency department. Attendees will get an in-depth look at the materials, products, and systems developed to provide safe and durable environments and discuss the outcomes.

E89: A Holistic Approach to Behavioral Health Treatment Facilities
Tuesday, November 13, 2018: 9:30 AM – 10:30 AM

The Neuro-Diagnostic Institute and Advanced Treatment Center is Indiana’s first new state mental hospital since 1952. First of its kind, this facility will diagnosis and develop treatment plans for all ages with a wide range of brain-related illnesses. The facility, scheduled to begin serving patients in early 2019, will be a key component allowing Indiana to be equipped to diagnose and care for those who suffer from neurological and mental health disorders. The design utilizes the existing Community East infrastructure to form a new facility and a connector between the two buildings, with a variety of new systems and state-of-the-art equipment.

E109: A Joining of Hands: Holistically Caring for the Behavioral Health Patient
Tuesday, November 13, 2018: 2:30 PM – 3:30 PM

“Improved access for patients,” “hotel-like care environments,” and “modern treatment facilities” are buzz words we hear today in the healthcare design industry. Unfortunately, behavioral health-focused facilities are often excluded from this conversation. This regional hospital behavioral health expansion is having that conversation. The project not only seeks to create modern facilities, but will consolidate behavioral health services into one building, allowing staff collaboration and access to patients from crisis intervention to outpatient counseling. This presentation will highlight the design and collaboration process with clinicians as well as strategies for flexibility and growth for the future, implemented with design team assistance.

Haven’t signed up yet for the show? Register here!

Annual Food Drive Collects 597 lbs of Food

For the fourth year in a row Stance Healthcare ended summer with a two-week long (August 20 – 31st) food drive benefiting The Food Bank of Waterloo Region.  Supporting the community in which we do business, employees cumulatively collected 597 lbs of food for the drive. Stance Healthcare contributed donating an additional $5 for each pound of food collected!

10 Design Features to Minimize Aggression in Behavioral Health Facilities

Patients arriving at a behavioral health facility may already be stressed due to their medical state or the fact that they may be admitted involuntarily. Often stress can lead to aggression in this type of environment, making it difficult for staff to perform optimally. It is reported that 32.4% of patients admitted to behavioral health facilities engaged in aggressive behavior or violence.

The thought is that if the built environment had design features to minimize aggression, then there would be an increase in the safety and well-being of patients and staff.

An article titled Psychiatric ward design can reduce aggressive behavior that was recently included in the Journal of Environmental Psychology highlights 10 design features to minimize aggression in behavioral health environments:

Minimize Crowding

  1. Shared bedrooms cause higher crowding stress, reduced privacy, more aggression, increased illness complaints and social withdrawal. Therefore, single patient rooms with private bathrooms lessen the stress associated with crowded spaces.
  2. Communal areas with seating options and ample space to regulate relationships are important. Since personal space intrusions can trigger aggression, it’s vital for patients to have ample personal space with seating options. This allows them to monitor their interactions with others and can keep greater distances.
  3. Design for a low ratio of patients to the number of rooms available. This will help reduce crowding and allow patients the ability to move between different rooms comfortably – regulating relationships and avoiding stressors.

Reduce Noise, Increase Control

  1. Uncontrollable or random noise increases stress and can trigger aggression. Therefore, noise reducing design can lessen stress and improves communication between staff and patients. Design measures for reducing noise include walls and doors that block noise, as well as sound-absorbing environmental surfaces that diminish echoing.
  2. A patient can become stressed when exposed to environmental conditions that are out of their control. Therefore, patient rooms should be designed with a certain level of control. Design features may include ways a patient can personalize their room or have operable features such as lighting and windows.

Positive Distractions

  1. It is well documented that gardens accessible to patients can reduce stress and improve emotional well-being. Gardens designed with informal natural styles that include vegetation and flowers are more effective in reducing stress than structured or geometric gardens with prominent hardscape.
  2. Nature window views can also reduce stress and diminish anger. Although not as effective as physically being in a garden, it is still beneficial.
  3. When selecting accessories for behavioral health facilities, realistic nature art should be considered. It is more effective at reducing stress and aggression than abstract artwork.
  4. Patients exposure to daylight may have shorter stays and staff exposed to daylight report less stress, better health, and higher satisfaction.

Design for Observations

  1. Final design features to minimize aggression include communal spaces and bedroom doors observable from a central area to help staff anticipate and prevent aggressive behavior. Floor layouts with a central area for observation should be considered over corridor-dominated designs.

Stance Healthcare’s Big Bike Ride Raises Over $7,500

The unpredictable weather didn’t prevent the staff at Stance Healthcare from participating in the Heart and Strokes Big Bike fundraising event for the second year in a row.  Employees eagerly rode the Big Red Bike through the streets of Kitchener for about 20 minutes.  Surpassing last year’s fundraising dollars, staff raised over $3000, our suppliers donated over $1000, and Stance Healthcare generously matched the employees fundraising goal, for a combined fundraising total of over $7,500!

The funds raised help ensure that critical research in hospitals and universities across Canada can continue. It supports the vision of creating healthy lives free of heart disease and stroke.