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Noise Reduction Solutions, Research Paper Example

Pages: 3

Words: 925

Research Paper

Substantial research conducted on the undesirable effects of noise on hospital staff and patients demonstrate that there are considerable negative effects. There is an established identification of noise as the major reason of awakenings and sleep disorders in patients.

Notwithstanding that there are other factors, which along with, noise contribute to sleep disorders, and noise is the primary cause. A quiet environment is particularly noteworthy in the hospital environments where a lot of noise reduce the saturation of oxygen and increases the requirements of oxygen support therapy among patients (Joint Commission Resources 2001).

The other effects of noise in the hospital environment seen in increased blood pressure, the rate of respiration and heart beat rates increased, and lack of sleep. There exists substantial evidence to show that noise negatively affects healing wound. Accordingly these findings show that the hospital stays of individuals who had cataract surgery were longer on occasions where there were noises from a construction within the environment. The amount of drugs used in surgery and post recovery increased in cases where the noise levels are high in the environment. 

A study conducted in Sweden recently to assess the effect of noise in the hospital environment supported the argument for noise reduction. Baum (1997) posited that the effect of adjusting acoustics in rooms done by substituting sound-absorbing ceiling with sound-reflecting ones in an intensive coronary-care unit showed the effect of noise as undesirable. During the instances where there were sound absorbing tiles put in place the pulse amplitudes in patients reduced as compared to patients in environments with sound absorbing roofing. The patient’s satisfaction in noise reduced environments was greater compared to patients in the noisy environments. The important observation in the study was the reduced instances of patient re hospitalization for patients treated during the instances of reduced noises. Increased noise levels also result in an increase anxiety and levels of noise induced stress increased by exposure to noise. There are also a number of psychological effects of noise such as the startle reflex further agitated by noise (Carayon 2007). Exposure of patients to continuous noise could change a patient’s memory, reduce pain tolerance, increase agitation and result in feelings of isolation by the patients.

On the hospital staff, perspective noise can be a cause of stress and affects their capability to work efficiently in such environments. In the study done in Sweden on the effect of room acoustics, the researcher established that, in times of better acoustical environments, the hospital staff experienced reduced work related demands and stated reduced strain and pressure.

Researchers established noise-induced stress as associated with emotional exhaustion in nurses. They established that noise strongly associated to annoyance and stress among nurses. In a different study, the hospital staff observed that the unreasonably significant levels of noise in the hospital environment hindered their work quality and also obstructed patient recovery and comfort. The research suggests the possibility that hospital staff may be able to preserve challenging performance at noisy environments. According to Cama (2009) this is so but with the effect of exercising more effort and becoming more exhausted.

Several studies conducted on the work performance by surgeons and anesthetists in different sound environments established that noise does not reduce performance significantly. Notwithstanding this noise affects the level of performance. Researchers, however, established a reduction in the short term mental, and memory effectiveness in anesthetists working in the typical noisy environments compared to their counterparts working in noise reduced environments (Boswell & Cannon 2011). The study further went ahead to establish that the level of communication in noise reduced environments being greater as a result of less communication inhibitors. Carayon (2007) provides that the increased levels of communication in these instances ensured reduction of errors by the hospital staff and reduced negative implications from improper communications. The efficiency of the hospital staff also impacted by reduced noise as the communication is straight forward and increased clarity reducing the instances of repetition.

Reduced noise in the hospital environments also has the effect of increased auditory communications leading to shouting. Baum (1997) states that the patient consultation is likely to be done with higher tones and making the doctor patient communication audible to other people due to these noises. When other patients can overhear the consultations between the doctor and the patient there is a likely hood of withholding some private, personal information from the doctor due to lack of privacy (Cama, 2009).

Undesirable sound and noise is a serious problem in hospitals and high levels of noise effect patients and staff negatively. These noises may slow the process of healing and affect the well-being of patients. The hospital environments must encourage clear and appropriate communication while at the same time guarding private information against exposure and perhaps misinterpreted or misused. According to the Joint Commission Resources (2001) the common barriers such as doors and windows can hinder staff convenience without guaranteeing that patients confidentiality or preventing the hospital staff from exchanging pertinent information. The reduction of noise in hospital environments should not only be aimed at that but also on the effectiveness of the strategies developed.

References

Baum, A. (1997). Cambridge Handbook of Psychology, Health and Medicine. Cambridge University Press.

Boswell, C. & Cannon, S. (2011). Introduction to Nursing Research: Incorporating Evidence-based Practice. Jones & Bartlett Publishers.

Cama, R. (2009). Evidence-Based Healthcare Design. John Wiley & Sons.

Carayon, P. (2007). Handbook of Human Factors and Ergonomics in Health Care and Patient Safety. Routledge.

Carpico, B. (2008). Noise Reduction in a Hospital Setting Using a Cultural Change Model. VDM Publishing.

Joint Commission Resources. (2001). Preventing Medication Errors: Strategies for Pharmacists. Joint Commission Resources.

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