2023 Health Design Research Scholar: Carla Mileo

Wednesday, August 02, 2023 11:14 | Anonymous member (Administrator)

AHDC is proud to continue its support for research in health design with our Research Scholarship now in its 2nd year. This unique opportunity provides a PhD or Masters student to apply for funding to specialise in the field of health facility design.

Congratulations to this year’s winner; Carla Mileo, a Master of Architecture candidate at the University of Melbourne; for her thesis on the topic on “Towards an Architecture of Healing: Sensory Approaches to Restraints and Seclusion in Mental Health Facilities.”

Research Summary

This research aims to explore how sensory design strategies can contribute to making acute

psychiatric inpatient environments more restorative and so help reduce and eliminate the

use of restraint and seclusion. This is important for at least three reasons:

  1. This is an area of mental healthcare design that has been under researched
  2. There is increasing societal need for evidence-based care that addresses a range of factors contributing to poor mental health, including psychological, biological and social
  3. There is potential to develop effective strategies that will contribute to achieving the Royal Commission reform priority to eliminate restraint and seclusion Research findings will contribute to an increasing knowledge of best practice for mental health facility design.

Selection Committee Statement

Committee findings were especially impressed by the topic of Towards an Architecture of Healing- Sensory Approaches to Reduce Restraint and Seclusion in Mental Health Facilities, as a worthwhile pursuit of a potential enhanced practice. Carla’s methodology and the quality of her academic support team also showed the merited rigour towards the potential positive application of any findings within practice.

Learn more about our Research Scholarships.