Authors: Carolyn Noel, VIC
Event: 2008 TheMHS Conference
Subject: Inpatient Services, CREATIVE ARTS
Type of resource: Conference Presentations and Papers
Abstract: This paper describes a creative arts process that promotes active involvement by clients to change the physical presentation of an acute inpatient psychiatric unit.
Most inpatient psychiatric units are practical, low stimulus ‘zones’ that function to contain a person whilst recovering from an acute exacerbation of their illness. As such they present as sterile, inhospitable places.
By engaging the inpatients in a process of consultation, design and facilitating implementation of their ideas to “improve the place” we converted an otherwise sterile and confronting environment into a more user friendly space. The creative process we used to change the physical look of the unit changed more than we expected; acute inpatient clients took more interest in their surroundings, self confidence was raised, vandalism reduced, and some practical problems were solved.