Com­pas­sion­ate changes

Modern Healthcare - - Opinions Letters -

Cul­ti­vat­ing a health­care en­vi­ron­ment that wel­comes loved ones and rec­og­nizes that fam­ily and friends’ in­volve­ment en­hances health­care de­liv­ery and pa­tient safety is fun­da­men­tal to the pa­tient-cen­tered ap­proach that char­ac­ter­izes the Plan­e­tree model of care. For that rea­son, Pres­i­dent Barack Obama’s or­der call­ing for HHS to draft a rule to en­sure that hos­pi­tals do not deny visi­ta­tion priv­i­leges on the ba­sis of race, color, na­tional ori­gin, re­li­gion, sex, sex­ual ori­en­ta­tion, gen­der iden­tity or dis­abil­ity (April 19, p. 4) is ap­plauded.

Hun­dreds of pa­tient fo­cus groups con­ducted by Plan­e­tree over the past sev­eral years paint a vivid pic­ture of what pa­tients want from their providers. They’re re­lieved and com­forted when their loved ones are not only wel­comed to be with them, but also en­cour­aged to be an­other set of eyes and ears to en­sure their needs are met.

Plan­e­tree, and vir­tu­ally all of its 250 health­care af­fil­i­ates, de­fines a vis­i­tor as any­one the pa­tient de­ter­mines is sig­nif­i­cant to their well­be­ing and whose pres­ence would en­hance their hos­pi­tal­iza­tion. Pa­tient-cen­tered hos­pi­tals al­low un­re­stricted, pa­tient-di­rected visi­ta­tion, which has been shown to de­crease pa­tients’ anx­i­ety, lower rates of car­diac com­pli­ca­tions and in­crease com­fort and pa­tient sat­is­fac­tion. The aim of pa­tient-cen­tered health­care or­ga­ni­za­tions is to per­son­al­ize, hu­man­ize and de­mys­tify the pa­tient ex­pe­ri­ence, know­ing that each pa­tient’s cir­cum­stances are unique and should be re­spected. It is only the pa­tient who should choose who vis­its and when.

Su­san Framp­ton Pres­i­dent Plan­e­tree Derby, Conn.

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