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Hosp Community Psychiatry. 1991 Jul;42(7):705-7.

Architectural guidelines for state psychiatric hospitals.

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Virginia Commonwealth University, Richmond 23284.


Mental patients are a population who have special needs for which architectural interventions can be helpful. The physical settings in state hospitals often do not provide the proper environment for therapeutic progress, nor do they contribute to the implementation of new programs for care. The author presents seven guidelines related to specific elements of the physical setting, such as space differentiation, color, texture, and lighting, that administrators and staff can use in analyzing existing hospital settings and in discussing designs for renovations or new construction with architects. The application of such guidelines should help establish architecture as a valuable tool in the therapeutic process.

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