A hospital room needs to provide patients with a safe and comfortable space, give staff optimal work conditions and ensure patient safety. It also must be designed to prevent adverse events like patient falls and infections. These factors make the design of a patient room an important and complex endeavor.
In order to meet the diverse needs of different patients, each healthcare facility must develop a unique set of room features. However, many common features such as single versus double room occupancy, proximity to nursing stations and window view have been shown to positively impact clinical outcomes.
Hospital rooms are incredibly varied, but most have the basic furniture you might find in a bedroom at home: a bed, a nightstand and a chair. In most cases, a television and phone are also present. Some hospitals also offer private rooms.
Most of the time, hospital rooms are shared by several patients at a given time. This can be an inconvenience for both patients and their visitors. In order to avoid infecting other patients, it is not safe for anyone to enter a patient’s room without wearing masks or gowns.
Instead, it is often best to visit patients in common areas of the hospital. Whether it is a lobby, waiting room or even a cafeteria, having cozy seating and coffee tables is a great way to allow visitors to stay in the same room while avoiding the need for patients to leave their beds for visits.
Patients want to be able to connect with their family members and friends in an environment that is safe and healthy, but it can be difficult for them to do so when everyone gathers around the bed, especially if they are still lying down. Hospital staff can help by suggesting they move to a lounge area, or to a chair in the room so that everyone can comfortably interact.
It is also important for patients to have a place to store their belongings in their room, because they are frequently moved from one location to another, which can put them at risk of losing something or having it stolen by staff. To avoid this, many hospitals now have rooms where all of the patient’s belongings can be safely stored in a secure cabinet, so they are accessible at all times.
Some hospitals limit visiting hours, so it can be hard for a patient to stay connected with their loved ones. Providing overnight visitor options can increase comfort and encourage guests to stay at the hospital longer. For example, a labor and delivery floor would benefit from having a small couch in each room so that the new mother can stay with her partner after the baby is born.
A hospital room must be able to accommodate the many roles that people play in the healthcare system, from family caregivers to clinicians. The final design of a patient room must consider how all of these individuals can support the patient’s care and recovery in an environment that is safe, healthy, welcoming and efficient.