How can 24-Hour Patient Visitation Enhance a Patient’s Experience?

To make the patient’s experience as positive as possible, The Johns Hopkins Hospital welcomes 24-hour patient visitation. Find out when family members and other visitors are welcome and share how you think 24-hour patient visitation will enhance a patient’s stay in today’s Hopkins Happenings Question of the Week.

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Information Technology May 8, 2015 at 7:23 pm

I believe that this observation may be helpful for both the patient and the family members/friends of the patient, but we have to think of the Physicians, Nurses, Techs and other hospital staff working with these patients. Not only for safety reasons... The team working with patients need to stay focused and need the space to give the best care possible and efficient in a timely matter. I think patient visits should be focused around the best time for doctors and/or nurses to have that time to meet with the family members as well as giving the patient time with their families and friends which is key in the patient care and well being. As said in other comments depending upon the unit and intensity of the care, patients visitations should be limited depending upon patient care.

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Mary Margaret Jacobs May 19, 2015 at 11:55 am

Thank you. Studies have shown that family involvement and presence enhances the patient and family experience of care, improves outcomes and reduces readmissions. As I said in reply to CSR’s comment, the policy does not apply to psychiatry which continues to have semi-private rooms but are also excluded from 24/7 visiting for the therapeutic and treatment reasons.

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CSR May 8, 2015 at 11:36 am

As someone who has been an inpatient at JHH, I remember being disturbed by the loud family of a patient whose room was two doors down from me. I think the type of ward and behavior of the visitors should always be considered no matter what time of day it is. I think privacy is also an extremely important factor to consider if visitors are exposed to other patients. Victims of violence, infectious diseases or those with severe mental health problems may need more privacy.

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Mary Margaret Jacobs May 19, 2015 at 11:54 am

Thank you for weighing in. We definitely took this into consideration. Psychiatry continues to have semi-private rooms but are excluded from 24/7 visiting for the therapeutic and treatment reasons.

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Bonnie May 8, 2015 at 9:20 am

Might enhance the stay of the patient who is being visited and very welcome if the patient is in a single room. However, I agree with Nora that it wouldn'g be too good for the other patient if sharing a room. True, patients don't sleep on a regular schedule and nurses and techs go in and out all hours, but there's a difference if you are trying to sleep and your neighbor patient has company and they get loud. Have to think of all people involved here. Maybe extending the hours but no middle of the night visits.

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Mary Margaret Jacobs May 19, 2015 at 11:54 am

Thank you for your comments. The policy does allow the patient to make decisions about who and when they want visitors, but does not change the expectation that the patient and family have a responsibility to be respectful and courteous and follow guidelines whenever they visit.

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Trudy May 8, 2015 at 8:42 am

Allowing 24 hour visitation is a great idea for relatives who can drop in on the way to or from work, especially if it's impossible to take time off during "normal" visiting hours. Generally speaking, patients don't sleep on a regular schedule while in the hospital anyway, so having a late night/early morning visitor is probably welcome.

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Mary Margaret Jacobs May 19, 2015 at 12:00 pm

The focus of the practice change is to allow the patient to make choices about who and when visiting occurs and to support their and the family meembers needs.

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Nora Lanier Kohl May 8, 2015 at 8:09 am

How can this enhance the patients stay when they share a room with another patient and they are awaken at 2 am in the morning with the other person's friends and family members visiting and enterrupting their rest? What about them?

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Mary Margaret Jacobs May 19, 2015 at 11:57 am

Thank you for your comment. The timing of the policy change was chosen because of the opening of Sheikh Zayed Tower, The Charlotte R. Bloomberg Children’s Center and the Nelson/Harvey Building which have provided us with the opportunity to have over 95 percent private rooms for our adult and pediatric inpatients. This change comes from recommendations from our patients and families and leading experts in patient-and family-centered care. Here is a link to more information: http://www.ipfcc.org/visiting.pdf

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