If you have ever spent any amount of time in a hospital room, you likely understand what it feels like to be trapped in a small environment in a strange bed. You would think a hospital room should be a safe and comfortable space. Unfortunately, a hospital stay can be an impersonal and uncomfortable experience. Let’s explore some hospital room amenities that can make a stay more comfortable.
Patients generally have no control over who can enter their room. While nurses, doctors, and family members should be allowed to come and go freely, strangers and support staff should have to knock or announce themselves before entering a room.
It would be so easy for hospitals to place a sign near a closed door that reads “Please knock and announce yourself before entering”. Even better would be a simple intercom and speaker system that allows the visitor to communicate with the patient before entering. The speakers could be integrated into a pillow speaker hospital system.
Personal Speaker and Remote
While on the subject of speakers, it is incredibly important that a patient be able to listen to music or watch TV without being distracted by the sound of a roommate’s TV. Each patient should have a personal pillow speaker in their hospital room that can be easily operated and offer a headphone jack. TV remotes should be designed so that patients or visitors can’t change the settings to override the TV mute.
You often have to arrive at the hospital with identification, a credit card, your smartphone, and a few other valuables. If you don’t have anyone to take your personal items home with them, it only makes sense that every hospital room be equipped with a locked cabinet or a safe that is securely built into a wall or closet.
Being in the hospital can feel very lonely, despite all the people coming and going. Patients often depend on visitors for making and keeping connections. There needs to be space and comfortable seating for guests and even health care providers to engage with the patients more intimately.
It isn’t unusual for patients to feel isolated, especially when loved ones are many miles away. Free Wi-Fi can afford the option to connect using email, video chats, and social media. A patient who has a streaming subscription can catch up on their favorite shows or listen to music. For those who enjoy reading, eBooks and newsfeeds can be accessed.
Toiletries and Socks
Every patient should be greeted with an adequate supply of basic toiletries and clean, slip-proof socks. Toiletries should include oral care products, shampoo and conditioner, a safety razor, gel soap, a comb, and moisturizer.
Hospital floors are often quite unsanitary, sadly. No one wants to rise to use the bathroom in bare feet. Non-slip hospital socks or slippers should be available to avoid coming in contact with unclean floor surfaces.
A hospital stay is not commonly something that is looked forward to. There are some simple and thoughtful things that hospitals can provide to make a visit to the hospital more comfortable for both patients and visitors. These include addressing privacy and safety, space for guests, Wi-Fi, and basic personal hygiene products.