SoutheastHEALTH Opens New Heart and Vascular Pavilion Designed for Patient, Family Comfort

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Tuesday, July 9, 2019

In the 14 private patient rooms equipped with Smart Tvs, nurses are just steps away from the patient’s bedside.

SoutheastHEALTH has opened a new, patient-centered Heart and Vascular Pavilion at Southeast Hospital. The new unit, located on the hospital's fifth floor, has been under construction since July of 2018.

Nurse manager Jennifer Kiplinger, BSN, RN, OaCN, says the unit has 14 spacious private rooms, each with upscale private baths that include walk-in showers with decorative tile accents. The unit is a "step down" unit from Cardiothoracic Intensive Care, where heart surgery patients begin their recovery.

The new pavilion, Kiplinger adds, "is built on the concept of decentralized nursing care. There is no central nurses' station. The nurses are positioned just outside patients' rooms at desks along the hallway. Each desk has windows into the patient room to assure our patients receive close observation by the nursing staff. It gets nurses back to the bedside, where they need to be."

A comfortable gathering area greets visitors as they step off the elevator.

"This unit provides the same attention to care that patients experience in the CTU," Kiplinger notes. "Patients have an added level of comfort knowing that their nurse is just a few steps away and readily available to answer any needs and concerns. The design also contributes to better continuity as patients transition from critical care to this cardiac step down unit."

Decorated in soothing tones of green, orange, brown and blue, the unit features sleek, modern furniture, artwork created by local artists, quartz countertops and Smart TVs. Large, new windows afford patients pleasant views. Innovative call light technology allows patients and families to have control not only of the television but also interior lighting at the touch of a button.

"We have also taken steps to help ensure patient safety," Kiplinger says. These include patient recliners that can easily be operated with one hand and will not tip when patients stand up and improved over-the-bed tables with extra storage. Four rooms have ceiling lifts that can move patients from bed to bath if the need arises.

The new unit includes hallways with subtle LED lighting and artwork created by local artists featuring the beauty found throughout Southeast Missouri.

The unit also includes a dedicated work area for ancillary staff such as physical therapy, dietary and case management. Physicians have a private dictation room.

"This unit offers patients an entirely different way of nursing," Kiplinger says. "It creates a hotel-like setting with a calming atmosphere that removes patients from the hospital hustle and bustle. We believe that patients and families will have an excellent patient experience, which is always our goal."