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Safety and security appropriate for the planned treatment programs shall be provided. See Section 1.2-4.6 (Behavioral and Mental Health Risk Assessment).
A2.2- A safe environment is critical; however, no environment can be entirely safe and free of risk. Each organization will need to determine the appropriate environment for the treatment programs it provides and the patients it serves.
The majority of persons who attempt suicide suffer from a treatable mental disorder, a substance abuse disorder, or both. Patients of inpatient psychiatric treatment facilities are considered at high risk for suicide; the environment should avoid physical hazards while maintaining a therapeutic environment. The built environment, no matter how well designed and constructed, cannot be relied on as an absolute preventive measure. Staff awareness of their environment, latent risks of that environment, and the behavior risks and needs of the patients served in the environment are absolute necessities. Different organizations and different patient populations will require greater or lesser tolerance for risk.
  1. In psychiatric patient care unit design, consideration should be given to visual control (including electronic surveillance) of corridors, dining areas, and social areas such as dayrooms and activity areas. Hidden alcoves and blind corners or areas should be avoided.
  2. The openness of the nurse station will be determined by the planned treatment program. Consideration should be given to patient privacy and also to staff safety.
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