The healing hospital paradigm is a change that hospitals and other clinical facilities are developing to assist the patient in recovery and a return to wellness (GCU, 2013). Environmental factors, patient emotions, and patient motivation can impact a patient’s healing process. This understanding is why health care facilities are moving from a treatment only approach to an overall healing approach (GCU, 2013). This approach will allow the patients and families to feel less stressed, and will allow health care professionals to focus on the patient and their healing instead of just their disease or illness. In this paper I will describe the components of a healing hospital as they relate to spirituality; challenges of creating a healing hospital; including barriers and complexities of the hospital environment; and along with biblical references that supports the concept of a healing hospital.
Components of Healing Hospitals
The healing hospital approach is addressed by using three components, technology, physical design features, and a culture of care (GCU, 2013). These components are turning health care environments into holistic places of healing, instead of contemporary health care facilities. The three components not only make changes to the care provided but to the buildings design and to the technical equipment that is used. The first component of the healing hospital is technology. Technology enhances the work of the health care professionals. The advancement in technology allows for more efficient and effective care. Doctors are able to access with enhanced computer systems, tests that are performed on patients; there are separate elevators for patient transport to provide privacy, and entertainment systems in patient rooms to provide relaxation and comfort. While using the most technological advancements it provides an environment that is safe and promotes healing (Dellinger, 2013).
The second component is the physical design of the hospital. These designs are put in place to increase patient comfort, safety, and improve patient and staff satisfaction. They include sinks that are seen upon entering the room with special lighting to encourage hand washing, which will reduce the infection rates. Dellinger, (2013) states that installing the right flooring is a major factor because it can reduce slips, falls, noise levels, fatigue, and improve air quality. Carpeting can make the hallways more inviting and quiet, instead of other flooring that can make a person feel cold, dark, and uncomfortable (Dellinger, 2013). Lastly, is the development of culture of care model, for staff to aid in providing care in a loving, and compassionate manner. An environment like this will help the patient and family to better cope with an illness or injury in a holistic way. Health care professionals using the culture of care model meet the needs of the patient’s physically, but also spiritually and emotionally (Dellinger, 2013).
Relationship of Spirituality
Spirituality includes the values of honesty, trust, kindness, hope, patience, compassion, joy, love, and faith. These values will assist in the healing process of the patient by giving them a sense of peace. Illnesses can be spiritual, physical, and emotional catastrophes for patients (Horowitz, 2008). According to Williams-Orlando, (2012) 77% of the patients want health care professionals to consider spiritual issues when handling medical care, but only 22% of the health care professionals consider it. Incorporating spirituality into caring may decrease anxiety, provide encouragement, add comfort, build a rapport with the patient, along with giving unconditional love and acceptance, which will increase the success of the healing process (Williams-Orlando, 2012).
Concepts related to healing hospitals
Healing hospitals allow patients to come and receive care that promotes sleep, relaxation, and decreases stress. Anxiety, stress, depression, and a loss of control can delay healing, while the promotion of rest, relaxation, and decreased amounts of stress allow healing to occur (Horowitz, 2008). The patient will have a better chance of recovery, with a decrease in infections in this environment, and shorter stays which will decrease medical costs for the patient and the medical facility (Dellinger, 2013).
Value of healing hospitals
These hospitals values to the communities that they serve, will contain admissions that are free of stress and anxiety. They will incorporate safe care from the health care professionals and contain environments that are safe, comfortable, relaxing, and promote healing using a holistic approach. They will have decreased rates in secondary infections and will no longer be places where returning home is a question (Dellinger, 2013).
Challenges and Barriers to Healing Hospitals
Development of a healing hospital comes with several challenges. To carry out the healing approach in these hospitals, there is a financial burden that comes along with it. A strong leadership, user friendly operating systems, and a good educational component must be effective to meet the developmental demands of a healing hospital (Herbert & Yoder, 2008). While compassionate care will meet the physical, emotional, and spiritual needs of the patient, the hospital must also consider the financial aspects of bringing about healing and wellness to patients. This change would take time and effort in every department, making sure that each employee is actively embracing the change, and increasing cost effectiveness, and healing outcomes for each patient (Herbert & Yoder, 2008).
Biblical Aspects of a Healing Hospital
The Bible verse that I found that incorporates holistic healing is in the book of Matthew. It states, “When Jesus saw the crowds, he went up to the mountainside and sat down. His disciples came to him, and he began to teach them. He said, blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs in the kingdom of heaven. Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted. Blessed are the meek, for they will inherit the earth. Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled. Blessed are the merciful, for they will be shown mercy. Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God. Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God. Blessed are those who are persecuted because of righteousness, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven (Matthew 5:1-10, New International Version).” It allows you to see God in each person that you provide care too, or it is as if God is within them. This verse incorporates a spiritual sense of healing using a holistic approach and seeing the whole person.
Healing hospitals use a holistic approach when caring for the public. They use the latest technology and equipment, a design that is tranquil, and staff that is encouraged to be compassionate, and caring to create an atmosphere that allows for comfort, rest, and promotes optimal healing. The development of these hospitals encourages health care professionals to see their patients holistically and provide safe care that encompasses a positive healing approach. This approach will address physical, emotional, and spiritual needs and provide a rapid recovery.
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