Connection to the natural world - direct exterior access for patients | U.S. Green Building Council
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LEED BD+C: Healthcare | v3 - LEED 2009

Connection to the natural world - direct exterior access for patients

SSc9.2 | Possible 1 point


To provide patients and staff with the health benefits associated with direct access to the natural environment.


To provide direct access to an exterior courtyard, terrace, garden or balcony with a minimum area of five square feet per patient for 75% of all inpatients AND 75% of qualifying outpatients with clinical Length of Stay (LOS) greater than four hours.

  • Qualifying outpatients may include outpatient renal dialysis, infusion therapies, ambulatory surgery intake and stage 2 recovery. Patients with length of stay greater than four hours, whose treatment makes them unable to move, such as emergency, stage 1 surgical recovery, and critical care may be excluded. Places of respite outside the building envelope that meet the requirements of SS Credit 9.1, Connection to the Natural World—Places of Respite, that are immediately adjacent to clinical areas or with direct access from inpatient units may be included in the calculation.
  • Qualifying spaces must be designated as non-smoking and meet the requirements of IEQ Prerequisite 2, Environmental Tobacco Smoke (ETS) Control.
  • Qualifying spaces must meet the requirement for outdoor air quality enumerated in IEQ Credit 5, Indoor Chemical and Pollutant Source Control, and be located more than 100 feet from building exhaust air locations, loading docks, building entrances and roadways subject to idling vehicles.
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