Nurses lend some design advice
And while the California museum looks at nursing’s past, in Florida, some nurses have been making a contribution to the future with a unique design project.
When Florida Hospital Orlando moved its neuro-critical-care unit from a tight J-shaped space to a new wing of the medical center, it called on nurses to help with the redesign. The result was an open-concept floor plan that eliminated excess noise, added more room for loved ones and brought in natural light. “Any time we could take down a wall or eliminate a wall, we did,” says Mary Jo Petersen, nurse director.
Patient rooms have glass walls to bring in light; they also leave enough space for a loveseat sofa for family members and other visitors. “We practice patient-centered medicine,” Petersen says.
Florida Hospital embarked on the renovation project two years ago when it moved the unit from its cramped quarters into the 31,860square-foot space. A multidisciplinary team of nurses, doctors and physical and respiratory therapists brainstormed best design practices. “We got case managers involved; we got patients, family and visitors involved,” Petersen says.
Alcoves between patient rooms, which are situated at an angle, allow nurses to be right beside their patients, with easy access to equipment.
The central nurses’ station also features a large oval conference table that allows greater team collaboration. “It’s almost like a big family,” says Kerry Putegnat, nurse manager. “Everybody loves it so far.”