Smart Hospital Rooms Make Hospital Stays Easier

When you check into a hospital, the admissions staff will ask for some basic information about you and your health history. After that, you’ll get a tour of the inpatient area and a room. Most hospitals offer either private rooms or semi-private (two patients) rooms. If you’re in a semi-private room, you’ll likely have a curtain that separates your bed from the other person’s. The hospital will charge a little extra for the semi-private room, but your insurance may cover some of that.

Once you’re in your room, there’s typically a TV and a white communication board. On the board, your nurse will list your daily goals and tasks. You’ll also see the names of your caregivers, and if you’re on a certain diet, you might have specific times that meals will be delivered. Often, there’s also a hospitality snack cart that volunteers push around during the day to sell snacks, toiletries and magazines.

You’ll probably have a fold-out chair or cot for visitors, and many hospitals provide blankets and pillows to keep you warm. There may not be much storage space in your room, so you might want to bring a suitcase or backpack for your stay.

Hospital staff will often come into your room to give you medication or tests. You might not like this, but it’s a crucial part of getting the right treatment and improving your health. You’ll have to sign a HIPAA form, which protects your privacy and gives your hospital permission to share information about your health with other medical professionals.

Many hospital staff members spend the majority of their time in patient rooms, and they’re not always happy about it. The most common complaint patients have is the lack of clear communication between them and their doctors. New smart room technologies change the game by putting important information directly in the patients’ hands. Patients can access test results, personal health data and their discharge plan on a tablet or their hospital’s TV. They can also order food, activate a white noise machine and listen to relaxation audio to help them sleep better.

Varied Lighting: Having a variety of lighting levels in a patient room can reduce eye strain and fatigue. Varied lighting can also be helpful for patients who have trouble keeping track of the time — being out of their normal routine can make it difficult to determine whether it’s day or night.

Quiet HVAC System: Installing a quiet, sound-insulating HVAC system can reduce noise in patient rooms. This can be especially useful in a pediatric hospital, where noise can disrupt young patients’ sleep patterns and cause them to wake up more frequently.

Integrated Video Technology: Inpatient rooms equipped with telehealth technology can allow clinicians to check in without needing to leave their beds. This can also allow outside specialists to consult with their patients without having to visit the hospital, which can cut down on transmission of germs and viruses.

These innovations can help reduce hospital staff workload and increase patients’ satisfaction with their stays. Ultimately, the goal is to create a responsive healthcare facility that provides calming spaces where patients feel well cared for and heal quickly.