In order to prevent community spread of COVID-19, hospitals across the country have changed visitor policies, virtually eliminating all visits from family and friends. Knowing how important support from loved ones is in the healing process, Southern New Hampshire Medical Center has been forced to innovate and come up with new ways to connect patients with their families. The hospital has turned to the power of technology and is using iPads to do this. The response has been incredible.
One patient was desperate to see his sons who work for a New Hampshire fire department. His daughter-in-law happens to work at SNHMC. She and another employee worked together to have his bed moved to a window at the end of the hall. His sons planned to visit through a 4th floor window using a ladder truck. Unfortunately, it didn’t go as planned, so the next day the staff tried using an iPad. The patient was able to visit his wife, daughter-in-law, one son and two grandchildren. Those involved say it was emotional and sweet.
Another patient who was in the hospital due to a stroke also felt alone. SNHMC staff used an iPad to let him “visit” his wife and son. They say it was comforting for the family to see the patient and know he was okay. The patient also chatted with a nurse via the iPad.
While video connections aren’t ideal, it’s one way everyone is working together to connect patients with their families to aid in the healing process.