Friday, November 30, 2007
Electronic charting for nurses
Our hospital is building a new tower and is in the design process phase. They want to move to a model that decentralizes the typical nurses' stations and go with documentation "cock-pits" right outside the patient rooms. There would be windows so the staff can see into the patients' rooms while they are doing their computer charting. There has been a great deal of controversy over whether these stations should be sitting or standing. Everyone wants the option to sit down to document, but that means using high stools for the standing work stations. I have encountered other high stools in some of our current nursing units, and many of the older nurses do not like them because of hip/knee/back issues and lack of proper foot support. These stations in the new facility are meant to be the nurse's primary work area so they need to be comfortable. The other issues is the hallways are only 8 ft. wide, with the cock-pit recessed, but our public health department is not crazy about chairs/stools migrating out into the hallways. I am curious what the official stance is on using high stools in various areas and if there is any research that discusses the pros/cons of using these stools. Our Facilities Dept. is asking me for evidence to support one direction vs. another. What experience do you have with nursing documentation areas, sit vs. stand, chairs vs. high stools, etc.?