Banner Health McKee Medical Center Geriatric Behavioral Health  |  Loveland, Colorado

To meet the growing need for geriatric behavioral health services (ages 55 and over) in the region, Banner Health teamed with Diamond Healthcare to make use of an underutilized second-floor wing which previously consisted of medical surgical patient rooms. The new, contained space consists of 17 patient beds, a mix of private and semi-private, and its own medical staff to aid in the varied needs of care. The program is centered around group therapy sessions and is supplemented with two activity rooms, private consult spaces, and a space for meals to be served on unit.

The design intent was to maximize sight lines from the nurse station for patient and staff safety. There are also specific design elements for the patient population including: wider corridors to allow for furniture as places of respite, handrails along the corridor, wider doors for patients with mobility devices, a 30x60 accessible shower in every patient room with grab bars to allow staff assistance and greater flexibility for accepting patients with mobility devices without moving other patients.

Safety was also addressed in dealing with the second-floor location of the unit. This presents a challenge for the intake system and self-harm risk via the windows. To address this our team integrated a sally port corridor into the design and located both the nurse station and intake room as close as possible to limit interaction with other patients and maintain both patient and staff safety during this sequence. A deep windowsill was built out in order to integrate motorized blinds for patient privacy and environmental control. This motorized blind is set behind a secondary window constructed of poly-carbonate rather than glass to mitigate breakage and patient risk.