Bristol, UK – Believed to the first application of its kind in the UK, Philips has installed dynamic and ambient LED lighting in the recently extended Neonatal Intensive Care Unit, (NICU), at St Michael’s Hospital, Bristol. This not only helps to create a calming environment for parents and babies but also may help nursing staff to work even more effectively than before. As a global leader in patient monitoring, the unit has purchased a range of PHILIPS IntelliVue monitoring equipment providing hospital staff with easy access to relevant data right at the patient’s bedside enabling more informed decisions to be made at point of care.
Designed with a holistic approach in mind, the lighting has become a key element in generating a sense of wellbeing within the unit, lessening the tension and stress which can sometimes be experienced when caring for a sick or premature baby. Rather than harsh fluorescent light, the LED lighting in the main unit can be dimmed in a range of colours. When required, the lighting can also be made brighter over each cot when hospital staff are caring for the babies or analyzing data on the patient monitor screens. In the additional clinical areas dynamic lighting, which mimics the changing nature of natural daylight, has been used to help staff stay alert.
The installation will also provide an evidence base for the health benefits of lighting. The hospital, in conjunction with Philips Research, will conduct an eight month study into how the new lighting affects clinical outcome, babies’ health and staff performance.
As Sue Harris from the Philips Mother and Child Care business unit comments, “We are delighted to have drawn on our Healthcare and Lighting expertise to bring the very best we can offer to the invaluable work the unit at St Michael’s provides. Any subtle change in the babies’ condition is picked up by the Intellivue system used here, allowing staff to provide quality care to these babies some of whom may require vital surgery. When caring for babies with such serious conditions little wonder stress levels can be high but what St Michael’s seeks to demonstrate is that a calming atmosphere, when applied to a high tech environment, may benefit patients, parents and staff alike.”
As Kay Pullen, unit matron, sums up, “The lighting is a great improvement. Without doubt, the facility now is second to none in terms of state-of-the-art medical equipment but it is perhaps the visual impression, which makes it even more exceptional. The lighting has changed the whole ambience of the room and we look forward to the findings of the research study later in the year.”