AS OF Thursday, Southern NSW Local Health District is introducing flexible visiting in its hospitals, particularly when patients want their family or friends to be involved in their care and decision-making.
In this patient-centred approach, patient preferences are increasingly driving improvements in health care.
For example, research now confirms that the presence of close family members reduces patients’ stress and enhances their feeling of wellbeing and safety.
An independent survey of SNSWLHD hospitals released earlier this month showed 94 per cent of patients rated their health care experience as either “very good” or “good”.
However, health district professionals believe they can improve on that result.
“The right clinical care remains important, but a patient’s need for privacy, rest, and the support of welcome visitors is part of the current healing mix that we can improve,” SNSWLHD chief executive Dr Max Alexander said.