Mount Sinai Hospital Queens Studies Patient Experience
Often, healthcare professionals find that becoming a patient is an eye-opening experience. To discover just what it felt like to be a patient in the Emergency Department of Mount Sinai Queens, a 235-bed acutecare community hospital located in Long Island City, the hospital Nursing Department conducted a study where several nurses volunteered to be "admitted" into the Emergency Department. As is typical of a patient admitted to any emergency room anywhere in the country, these "patients" were stripped of their personal belongings, asked to move only with assistance and asked intimate questions (often repeatedly).
How did it feel? In part, the nurses/patients found that they were uncomfortable, vulnerable, frightened, uncertain about the future, bored and lonely. They were also profoundly grateful to caregivers who were friendly, took appropriate safety measures and were informative, caring and professional.
Major themes that the abstract will present are:
• Finding a balance between the need for assistance while valuing independence.
• The patient being able to control the experience of being a patient. For instance, understanding the frustration at having repeatedly been asked the same questions.
• Providing information in a timely manner.
• Recognizing the patient as an individual.
• The spirit of caring.
• Little touches, such as having set-up trays for meals within reach.
• Closure at discharge.
• The quality of nursepatient relationship as central to the patient experience.
The Mount Sinai Queens nurses who walked in the shoes of patients were Mary Yianelis, R.N.; Marcia Norenberg, R.N.; Grace Kowalska, R.N, and Sung Yeal Domingo, R.N.
"We hope that the awareness and compassion these nurses gained from this study trickles down to all the staff," Kathleen Scher, Vice President for Mount Sinai Queens Nursing and Chief Nursing Officer, said. "We hope, too, we can encourage other hospitals to consider programs that raise the awareness of their health- care professionals."
Mount Sinai Queens, a 235-bed licensed acute care facility, provides adult medical and surgical services, with a team of nearly 400 voluntary physicians representing 36 specialties. Between the physicians and staff, 50 languages are spoken- just one of the many ways that Mount Sinai Queens serves the needs of the culturally diverse population in its community.
Mount Sinai Queens is the first and only community hospital to bear the prestigious Mount Sinai name. It is unique in the community, as it does not merely have an affiliation with Mount Sinai, but is a fully integrated part of Mount Sinai. The hospital's overarching goal has been to combine the medical excellence of the Mount Sinai Hospital with the compassionate, caring environment to be expected from a community hospital.
In addition to the main hospital setting, the hospital serves the community through:
• Family Associates, providing both primary and specialty care
• Physician Associates, providing primary and specialty care to adults
• Ambulatory Surgery Center, a hospitalbased outpatient surgery center
• Workplace Wellness, providing the business community with facilitated access to a wide range of hospital services, occupational health and wellness programs.
In keeping with Mount Sinai's tradition of ongoing research, achievement and reinvestment in the community, Mount Sinai Queens continues to grow. In total, the hospital has reinvested more than $30M to improve facilities and upgrade technology.