Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Science - Human Sciences


Human Sciences

First Advisor

Dr. Mitzi R. Perritt

Second Advisor

Dr. Ray L. Darville

Third Advisor

Dr. Karen Migl

Fourth Advisor

Ms. Annabella Koloskov


This study investigated nursing staff members perspectives of their existing Emergency Department (ED) and their ability to care appropriately for behavioral health patients within the environment. The study involved three rural hospitals in eastern Texas that may not always have the proper resources to care effectively for this vulnerable patient population. The researcher administered a paper-based survey utilizing a Likert-scale response system to nursing staff across all facilities and received participation from 56 respondents. Survey questions were designed to investigate the current ED environment and identify design features available to assist with caring for behavioral health patients. Data gathered revealed staff members’ preference for enhanced security within the ED in addition to designated treatment area(s) to help better manage the behavioral health population treated at their facilities.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.



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