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Knowledge Repository

A Study of Hospital Inpatient Unit Design Factors Impacting Direct Patient Care Time, Documentation Time, and Patient Safety

Author(s): Clark, T., Combs, S.
Architects have experimented with numerous inpatient care unit (IPU) designs, such as racetracks, “T-shapes,”, “L-shapes,”, triangular forms, and many others. There is no clear consensus on how the designs of these spaces and other physical features within IPUs influence healthcare provider productivity, safety, and overall effectiveness.
Key Point Summary

The Influence of Neonatal Intensive Care Unit Design on Sound Level

Author(s): Chen, H.-L., Chen, C.-H., Wu, C.-C., Huang, H.-J., Wang, T.-M., Hsu, C.-C.
Preterm infants receiving care in neonatal intensive care units (NICUs) are especially susceptible to adverse effects caused by excessive noise. Previous studies indicate that the physical designs of NICUs themselves hold a large influence over the overall noise level.
Key Point Summary

Improving the Patient Experience: Best Practices for Safety-Net Clinic Redesign

Author(s): Gulwadi, G., Keller, A., Joseph, A.

Adapting to Family-Centered Hospital Design: Changes in Providers’ Attitudes over a Two-Year Period

Author(s): France, D., Throop, P., Joers, B., Allen, L., Parekh, A., Rickard, D., Deshpande, J.
Although hospitals are being designed based on evidence-based design principles, it’s unclear how working in such an environment influences providers’ attitudes and professional performance.  
Key Point Summary

The Effect of Environmental Design on Reducing Nursing Errors and Increasing Efficiency in Acute Care Settings: A Review and Analysis of the Literature

Author(s): Chaudhury, H., Mahmood, A., Valente, M.
In acute care settings, the physical environment plays an important role in staff efficiency and patient safety. Some research suggests that poor environments can result in staff stress, anxiety, and distractions due to noise; artificial lighting; improper or inadequate ventilation; and disorienting layouts of nursing units. There is less research on how environmental factors affect nursing staff health, effectiveness, errors, and job satisfaction. 
Key Point Summary

Using a Task Analysis to Describe Nursing Work in Acute Care Patient Environments

Author(s): Battisto, D., Pak, R., Vander Wood, M. A., Pilcher, J. J.
A growing body of research demonstrates linkages between workplace design and processes in healthcare facilities with staff and patient safety, operational efficiency, staff satisfaction, and medical errors. There has been less emphasis on the role of the built environment in helping or hindering care delivery. Research is needed on the contextualized activities performed by nurses and how nurses spend their time to measure the effects of interventions aimed at redesigning care to improve safety or efficiency or to understand the implications of policy changes for nursing practice.
Key Point Summary

The impact of health facilities on healthcare workers’ well-being and performance

Author(s): Rechel, B., Buchan, J., McKee, M.
There is extensive research on the effect of healthcare environments on patients. But much less is known about health facilities’ impact the staff, even while there is growing recognition of the need for healthy working environments. Poor healthcare working environments can relate to the nature of the work—long and antisocial hours, little administrative support, physical labor, and, sometimes, violence. 
Key Point Summary

Interruptions and Geographic Challenges to Nurses' Cognitive Workload

Author(s): Redding, D., Robinson, S.
Inpatient care is fast-paced and requires nurses to constantly shift their attention to make clinical decisions and care for patients in a constantly environment. Nurses integrate complex thinking with psychomotor and affective skills to deliver interventions. This thinking is continually disrupted by interruptions and distractions, which compete for their attention and can lead to errors or omissions and potentially pose a risk to patient safety.
Key Point Summary

Using evidence-based environmental design to enhance safety and quality.

Author(s): Sadler, B., Joseph, A., Keller, A., Rostenberg, B.