The input of patients and their families is critical to our ability to provide the best patient care on the Neurological Intensive Care Unit (Neuro-ICU) and throughout the hospital. We consider the patient and his/her family to be an important part of our care team and encourage participation in decisions about treatment and in all phases of the recovery process. Our neurocritical care team is spearheading a NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital-supported effort to establish family-centered care, allowing families to play an active role in decision-making about strategies to improve care on critical care units and throughout the hospital. Improvements that have already been made include the following:
- Visitation hours have been changed to 24/7 to better accommodate families and friends.
- After discussion with the family, children are allowed to visit their loved ones in the Neuro-ICU.
- Families are encouraged to join us in the morning for examination rounds.
- Treatment strategies and decision-making are closely discussed with family members, and regular updates are readily available from the care team.
This approach empowers families and patients to provide ideas on how to further improve patient care. Foreign language interpreters and educational materials are also available to enhance the understanding of families and patients about the care we are providing. We believe that this kind of partnership among patients, family members, and caregivers speeds the healing process and results in better patient outcomes.