Designing patient rooms for the entire family can improve patient satisfaction and outcomes

Hospital rooms are often not designed to accommodate extended stays for anyone other than the patient, which can have negative effects on patient outcome.

May 01, 2017 |

Pixabay Public Domain

New insights recently released from Steelcase Health underscore the importance of family participation during a patient’s hospital stay and highlight how patient room design can impact family experiences and influence patient satisfaction and outcomes. The company’s findings also reveal that, in most current patient room settings, many family members still have significant unmet needs.

Well-designed healthcare environments can be a powerful tool in supporting a family’s ability to meaningfully engage in their loved one’s care, but many hospitals have yet to fully harness their spaces to maximize this engagement,” says Michelle Ossmann, MSN, PhD, Director of Healthcare Environments at Steelcase Health.

Healthcare environments are often not designed to support the roles that family members play in a patient’s journey. Steelcase Health researchers identified five key issues that can affect family wellbeing and engagement in a patient room:

  1. Family members can be unintentionally blocked from critical communications.
  2. Difficult sleeping conditions.
  3. No place to share a meal.
  4. Uncomfortable hospitality environment
  5. Nowhere to plug in

The company’s findings show that family members need intuitive, welcoming and hosted environments that both support fundamental needs, such as sleeping, sharing meals and working, and assists them in productively partnering with clinicians to meet their loved one’s healthcare needs.

The findings from Steelcase Health bolster research on current healthcare trends such as patient and provider satisfaction as quality indicators, the focus on patient-and-family-centered-care, and the adoption of patient and family advisory boards and councils at hospitals and health systems.

For more information on the unmet needs of patient families, click here.

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