1. Bazuin, Doug EDAC
  2. Cardon, Kerrie RN, AIA, ACHA


A number of elements contribute to a healing ICU environment. The layout of a critical care unit helps create an environment that supports caregiving, which helps alleviate a host of work-related stresses. A quieter environment, one that includes family and friends, dotted with windows and natural light, creates a space that makes people feel balanced and reassured. A healing environment responds to the needs of all the people within a critical care unit-those who receive or give care and those who support patients and staff. Critical care units should be designed to focus on healing the body, the mind, and the senses. The design and policies of that department can be created in such a way to provide a sense of calm and balance. The physical environment has an impact on patient outcomes; the psychological environment can, too. A healing ICU environment will balance both. The authors discuss the ways in which architecture, interior design, and behavior contribute to a healing ICU environment.