Children’s Minnesota Inpatient Mental Health Unit

Children's Minnesota Inpatient Mental Health Unit Lobby

Children’s Minnesota Inpatient Mental Health Unit

Behavioral Health Design for Children

To meet surging demand for pediatric mental health services, Children’s Minnesota bolstered its St. Paul campus with an innovative behavioral health inpatient care unit. The first of its kind for Children’s Minnesota, the facility sits at the intersection of patient comfort and comprehensive care.

Located on the hospital’s fourth floor, the 22-bed space implements design principles which promote a healing and sensory-friendly environment including a soft color palette, unique watercolor-like wall art inspired by the changing seasons, and large windows to let in natural light. The unit will provide an advanced model of care — rarely accessible throughout much of the United States — to more than 1,000 kids annually.

Engaging Children in Design

The design team consulted with the Children’s Youth Advisory Committee, a group comprised of patients aged ten to 18, to ensure the new space met the specific needs of patients and their families. The committee reported individuality as one of its top priorities, which is often missing from traditional healthcare settings.

To address this, spacious and private patient rooms allow the facility to be one of only a handful in the country which allows parents to spend the night in their child’s room – a significant measure in supporting patient and family comfort. Four negative pressure capable patient rooms will allow for treatment of patients with respiratory illness while protecting the other patients throughout the space to improve biosafety in the care environment.

Age-Appropriate Amenities

The unit will serve patients from six to 17 years old.  To ensure adolescents’ and younger children’s unique needs are met, each age group has their own separate wing, complete with distinct common areas and amenities. Patients can freely access various amenities including activity rooms, quiet spaces, day rooms, and an outdoor area to further protect patient dignity and independence.

This new unit is one of few in Minnesota that admits patients with more complex medical conditions. To treat these patients, it is staffed with a full suite of mental healthcare specialists, including psychiatrists, social workers, nurses, occupational therapists, music therapists, and more.

Children's Minnesota Inpatient Mental Health Unit Lobby
Children’s Minnesota

St. Paul, MN
United States

15,700 sf