questions about hospitals

  1. Dear all nurses,

    I am an industrial design student at Pratt Institute.
    For my thesis, I am thinking about designing a divider to be placed in hospitals for patient privacy because people (my friends included), who have been in hospitals often complain about how there is a lack of privacy in hospitals.
    (I do not know any doctors or nurses to ask questions so I am writing on this website. Could you please answer my questions?)

    As far as I understand, most patient areas in hospitals only have thin curtains separating the patient beds.
    I understand that hospitals use curtains so that the nurses could easily push the curtains out of their way when necessary.
    But do you think there could be an alternative to thin curtains in hospitals?
    Something more solid to give a better sense of a private space for a patient? kind of like an office cubicle/divider?

    I was looking at a project done by a design firm in London. They designed units to be placed in PACU/recovery rooms.

    Do you think this is realistic?
    I am assuming that these units get the power sources, oxygen, nitrous oxide, etc. from the ground.
    But of the recovery rooms I have seen are much smaller rectangular rooms with more equipment around them and get the gases from the wall. (I'm assuming that there will be a different set of equipment necessary for different kinds of patients.)

    With all of these things said, if you could please answer these questions, that would really help me out. a lot.

    1. are there opportunities / areas in hospitals for solid dividers (not curtains but things that look like office cubicles) to be placed in for patient privacy?
    2. if so, what is that area called and what are the basic requirements in terms of necessary equipments?

    Please let me know.

    Thank you very much.

    Kous H.
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    About kous

    Joined: Apr '11; Posts: 1


  3. by   GHGoonette
    The unit pictured is very pretty, but would never do for a phase 1 recovery area. Patients emerging from anaesthetic need to be monitored on a 1:1 basis, and having all those little cubicles would simply not be practical from a patient safety point of view. I'd like to know who they consulted when designing the unit.

    Might be ok for a GIT unit, where the patients receive conscious sedation, or where the monitoring doesn't need to be too intensive. Possibly a phase 2 recovery area.

    I've proposed heavy-duty, plastic wipe-clean curtains in our recovery area, which is practical from an infection control point of view. You just can't have solid partitions where your staffing is frequently limited and you've got patients with endotracheal tubes or laryngeal masks in, and where the situation can go from calm and organized to life-threatening critical in seconds. Dodging around walls to get to a patient is just not an option.