The effects of noise in a Healthcare environment.

More and more studies are showing that noise in a healthcare environment has many negative impacts. One of the most alarming effects of noise in a healthcare environment is the increased potential for human error.

Gunnar Ohlen, Chief Medical Officer, at Karolinska University Hospital in Norway recently did a study that measured background noise in trauma rooms during training scenarios. Then, installed acoustic treatment overnight and measured results the next day.

Healthcare Acoustic PanelsThe study showed an improvement in speech intelligibility among the staff, who immediately noticed the improvement.  It also showed an increase in the comfort levels of the patients and what they perceived as the competency level of the staff.

High levels of ambient noise have been shown to cause errors, distractions, crankiness, impatience and inappropriate behavior.  See another blog post we did on the effects of noise on learning here.

A study in the United States titled "The Business case for Better Buildings" showed the increased costs of providing better environments could realize a Return on Investment in as little as 3 years.

For more information see the following YouTube video: http://youtu.be/prbVJMLMGc4

Have you experienced the negative impacts of noise in a healthcare environment?

Tell us about it by commenting below.

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