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Strategies for Patient Families Integration in Caregiving: A Consensus Opinion

Authors: Ibrahim A. Alkali


There is no reservation on the outstanding contribution of patient families in restoration of hospitalised patients, hence their consideration as essential component of hospital ward regimen. The psychological and emotional support a patient requires has been found to be solely provided by the patient’s family. However, consideration of their presence as one of the major functional requirements of an inpatient setting design have always been a source of disquiet, especially in developing countries where policies, norms and protocols of healthcare administration have no consideration for the patients’ family. This have been a major challenge to the hospital ward facilities, a concern for the hospital administration and patient management. The study therefore is aimed at obtaining a consensus opinion on the best approach for family integration in the design of an inpatient setting.  A one day visioning charrette involving Architects, Nurses, Medical Doctors, Healthcare assistants and representatives from the Patient families was conducted with the aim of arriving at a consensus opinion on practical design approach for sustainable family integration. Patient’s family are found to be decisive character of hospital ward regimen that cannot be undermined. However, several challenges that impede family integration were identified and subsequently a recommendation for an ideal approach. This will serve as a guide to both architects and hospital management in implementing much desired Patient and Family Centred Care.

Keywords: Caregiving, Inpatient setting, Integration, Patient Families.

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