If you or anyone you know has ever had to stay in the hospital, you probably have a level of familiarity with the nurse call button. This is an important part of every long-term medical facility because it ensures patients can achieve some level of privacy while also being able to call for help when they need it. Patient needs can vary greatly depending on the severity of their injury or illness, as well as their own individual limitations. New innovations in the nurse call button should be considered by all of these kinds of medical facilities to take pressure off of nurses while continuing to ensure the best possible care for patients.
As you may already know, the U.S. is in the midst of what some are describing as a national crisis—a severe nursing staff shortage. The pandemic has left the healthcare system fractured and married in problems as nurses leave their profession in order to seek new lines of work. According to a recent survey by Nurse.org, 87% of nurses are experiencing burnout, which is attributed to unsafe staffing ratios, as reported by the American Nurses Association (ANA). Without enough nurses to go around, facilities are having to overload every nurse they have, making it far more difficult for them to take care of their patients.
Nurse call buttons are just as important for nurses as they are for patients, and new innovations can make every nurse’s shift easier to manage so they can continue to provide exceptional care to their patients.
Of course, the main purpose of the nurse call button is to ensure appropriate patient care. Patients need to be given some level of privacy, but nurses can’t know what’s going on behind a closed door. Nurse call buttons give the patient a way to call for help whenever they need it, but not every call is the same. A patient who has fallen or been injured, for example, needs to take priority over a patient who simply has a question for their nurse or wants a fresh blanket and is able to wait for better availability. New innovations can make it easier for nurses to determine which calls to prioritize, giving them more leeway in their workday and continuing to deliver excellent care to every patient, even when dealing with staffing struggles.
Nurse call systems are recognizing the need to innovate and keep up with modern technology for the best experience between both nurses and patients. New system technologies have options that allow patients to select between different buttons that indicate their needs more thoroughly, helping nurses prioritize calls.
Innovative technology for nurse call systems also includes better integration with charts, data, and other communication systems within the hospital. Better integration makes the system easier for nurses and simplifies patient care by ensuring nurses have all of the pertinent information whenever they’re dealing with a new patient. This is critical for ensuring the best possible care for every individual patient.
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