By: Dawn Fluhler—
Muncie, IN—Last month, Indiana University Health Ball Memorial Hospital revealed a brand new, modern, spacious and technologically rich Adult Surgical Unit.
Located on the 9th floor in the North tower, the new space relocates part of the former 7th floor of the North Tower, where patients stay, when necessary, following surgical procedures. The new space provides all private patient rooms that foster a better environment for patients and staff.
“The biggest change is that we now have double the space and all private patient rooms,” according to Teresa Elliott, Clinical Operations Manager at IU Health Ball Memorial Hospital. “On the 7th floor we had 27 rooms, of which 20 were semiprivate. On 9 North, we now have 25 private patient rooms.”
The spacious rooms are designed to accommodate patient and family members for a positive healing experience. Private, comfortable rooms are a huge patient satisfier, as consistently indicated on patient surveys.
“The new 9N rooms have ceiling lift systems in every room,” said Chief Nursing Officer Carla Cox. “The lifts allow patients to be safely transferred from bed to standing or sitting, and reduce the stress and risk of injury to patients and team members.”
Other unique features of 9N, which is a part of an ongoing hospital improvement and renovation program, include:
- A bariatric patient room, which can accommodate a patient weighing up to 1,100 pounds.
- Two negative air flow rooms for respiratory isolation patients.
- Masimo® vital sign monitors – leading edge technology that documents real- time vital signs and automatically uploads to patient electronic charts, providing information accessibility to all nurses and physicians caring for the patient.
The new space and modern environment are improving care overall.
Elliott said, “When you are sick and not feeling well and deal with roommate and family dynamics, that causes a lot of stress. “These rooms are more modern and bright, aiding in the overall feeling and healing to the patient. They have private time to rest, and nurses and doctors can have personalized time with patients.”
The patient population for the Adult Surgical Unit includes bariatric surgery patients, diabetic patients, patients with small bowel obstructions, trauma and emergency surgery preparation patients, breast reconstruction patients, and prostate surgery patients. In other words, surgery patients who need continued hospitalization to stabilize before going home.
From an internal perspective, the new 9 North Adult Surgical Unit provides nurses a brighter environment, more space to work in and more ease in caring for patients.
“I really like that I am able to work in this beautiful new space and care for patients more easily,” said Registered Nurse Ann Byers, who has worked at IU Health Ball Memorial Hospital for 9 years, and on medical/surgical units for 8 years.
“Now I don’t have to look for pulse oximetry or other numbers separately, they’re now all on one machine,” she said. “I can set it up to do blood pressure every ‘x’ minutes, which saves time – and it’s uploaded electronically.”
Byers says she is “very proud of it” and “you have to see it to believe it.”
It took a year of renovations and an intense day of moving from one floor to the new space.
So far, patients, visitors, physicians and doctors have these things to say:
- “My favorite part by far is private rooms. My patients get to maintain privacy, and have more space for their families,”
- “I like the media center in the family area for phone charging, TV control, etc.”
- “We get positive patient comments every day. They can’t believe the difference.”
- “Not having to share a TV or bathroom and having more space gave us a better experience overall”
“This is the first of many unit renovations to come,” Dr. Jeff Bird, President of IU Health Ball Memorial Hospital said. “It takes more time than we’d like, and a great deal of resources to convert shared and semi-private rooms and floors to new units like 9 North. But we are working diligently at this, and we’re committed to not only the best care for every patient, but also an environment that provides optimal care, privacy and healing for our patients and their supporters.”
About Indiana University Health Ball Memorial Hospital
IU Health Ball Memorial Hospital serves as a tertiary referral center and teaching hospital for East Central Indiana and part of Indiana University Health. IU Health Ball Memorial Hospital is accredited by the Joint Commission and maintains 1.2 million square feet of facilities. More than 17,700 patients are admitted every year and more than 300,000 outpatient procedures are completed annually. Dr. Jeff Bird is President. Learn more at iuhealth.org/ball-memorial.