De-escalation of behavioral health patients in the ED

Improving the behavioral health care experience 

Creating an enhanced emergency care environment

Supporting de-escalation of patients with behavioral health issues


Management of patients with behavioral health issues in the emergency department (ED) continues to be a growing concern. EDs are often a safety net for individuals who experience mental health, behavioral health, or substance abuse episodes or crises. This has cascaded into problems associated with overcrowding, extended length of stay, and potential for worsened outcomes.1

Patients with behavioral health issues present with a myriad of symptoms. Loss of control and disassociation from reality can cause these patients to be difficult to handle. Standard ED rooms do not always have the resources to positively support the mental health of patients and families. Some patients may need relaxation to de-escalate and some need stimuli to engage. Philips Ambient Experience solutions can be quickly personalized to transform the room environment to suit the individual patient needs.

Redefining the behavioral health experience

Recently, Children’s Health in Dallas teamed up with Philips to create and pilot new innovative ED rooms with advanced technology, Recornect interactive screens, ambient lighting, sound, and scenery that can be adapted to serve children and teens experiencing a behavioral health emergency.

Watch our webinar to learn more about this breakthrough program.

Ambient Experience themes are well researched and based on the physiological effects of stress on the individual and the impact on the ability to heal. The intent is to help calm the patient and improve patient and staff interaction.

Improving the patient experience in the ED

Caring for patients with behavioral health issues is complex, but their actual experience in the ED can be improved through the use of Philips Ambient Experience solutions.

One of the first opportunities for improvement is to calm the patient. Dynamic lighting, audio, and visual elements in the room can be adjusted to soothe and relax. Creating a positive distraction experience helps counteract the depressed, agitated, or psychotic state.

Key benefits of Ambient Experience for behavioral health:

  • Creates a calming environment 
  • Supports de-escalation and active relaxation 
  • May help reduce the use of sedation and restraints 
  • Supports reduced length of stay

While useful in the emergency department, Ambient Experience is also an excellent solution for private rooms in the psychiatric unit

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Minimizing aggressive and violent incidents can assist in the management of patients with behavioral health issues in the emergency room. De-escalation techniques allow ED staff to perform more effectively and may help reduce the length of stay for patients.

Over 2,500 worldwide installations demonstrate its efficacy.

Enhancing the behavioral health experience

Helping to enhance the behavioral health experience
for ED patients and staff

Learn how to enhance the behavioral health experience in your emergency department. Download our white paper to read insights from our consultants.

Patient experience


Enhancing the patient experience can help improve efficiency as well as patient and staff satisfaction.

Ambient Experience for pediatrics


Turning the imaging exam journey into a positive healthcare experience.

Sharon Anoush Chekijian, MD. Emergency Departments a Frayed Safety Net for Behavioral, Mental Health. U.S. News. January 7, 2022.

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The Ambient Experience solutions for behavioral health are currently only available in the United States. Please contact us for more information.

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