Hospital launches new initiative to help patients sleep better
- Credit: IAN BURT
A hospital has launched a new initiative which aims to help patients in its care sleep better.
The Queen Elizabeth Hospital, in King’s Lynn, is now making a conscious effort to create more comfortable surroundings for those staying overnight.
The campaign – called Helping you Sleep Healthier (HUSH) - has introduced a new ‘Hospital at Night’ mode where noise will be kept to a minimum and lights will be dimmed.
Those on the wards are also encouraged to lower their voices and use electronic devices with the sound off or the volume reduced.
And while these may seem small and subtle changes around the hospital, it is hoped they will help patients with their sleep and recovery.
Emma Harrison, Patient Experience and Public Involvement Lead at the hospital, said patients who complete feedback surveys often say reducing noise levels at night would have a positive impact on their overall experience.
She said: “Sleep is important for recovery and general wellbeing...
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“...it is therefore essential that we are all doing what we can to help our patients to sleep whether it is turning off lights at an agreed time, keeping our voices down or turning the volume down on ward phones.
“Patients can help us and other patients too by turning off their electronic devices or switching these to silent mode.”
She added: “Hospital environments are by their nature busy but that is not to say that we can’t do our best to support our patients to have a good night’s rest to help them to recover from their reason for being in hospital...”
Dr Steve Green, a clinical psychologist at the hospital, explains poor sleep can have an impact on patients, particularly those who have a long-term stay in hospital.
He said: “While an occasional poor night is unlikely to have any long-term consequences, just one bad night can negatively affect thinking, memory, and emotional wellbeing.
“For patients staying in hospital over a long period of time, repeated episodes of poor sleep, exacerbated by night time noise and ward practices, can begin to have a detrimental effect on health and recovery.”