A hospital is a healthcare institution that provides patient care for specialized staff and equipment, and which often, but not always, provides long-term patient care. A hospital today is a center for professional healthcare provided by doctors and nurses. In the Middle Ages, it could serve other functions, such as alms houses for the poor or hostels for pilgrims. The name comes from Latin hospes (host), which is also the root of the words hotel and hospitality. Hospitals acquired infections (HAIs), also known as healthcare-associated infections, include almost all clinically evident infections that do not originate in a patient’s initial admission diagnosis.
Within hours of hospitalization, a patient’s flora begins to acquire characteristics of the surrounding bacterial pool. Most infections that become clinically evident after 48 hours of hospitalization are considered hospital acquired. Infections that occur after the patient’s discharge from the hospital can be considered to have a non-social origin if the organisms were acquired during the hospital stay. Today, hospitals are usually funded by the state, health organizations (for-profit or non-profit), health insurance or charities, including direct charitable donations. In history, however, they were often founded and funded by religious orders or charitable individuals and leaders.
Similarly, today’s hospitals are largely noticed by professional doctors, surgeons and nurses, while this work in history was usually performed by basic religious orders or by volunteers. There are several kinds of hospitals. The best known is the general hospital set up to deal with many types of illnesses and injuries and which typically has an emergency department to deal with immediate threats to the health and capacity to send emergency medical services. An ordinary hospital is typically the best health facility in its region with a large number of beds for intensive care and long-term care, surgery and childbirth facilities, bioassay laboratories, etc. Larger cities can have many different hospitals of different sizes and facilities. A plum wall says it all: Hospital services are separate and different from boarding and care services – but both are easily accessible to pet owners and team members.
During an honest conversation with his architect, Dr. David Gordon, medical director of VCA Arroyo Animal Hospital (formerly Arroyo Pet Care Center) in Lake Forest, California, mentioned that he would like to clearly separate the hospital and medical functions and the boarding and care functions. Still, his idea of using a scalpel handle and blade on the outside of the building seemed to depict that separation did not quite seem appropriate. Some patients just come for diagnosis and / or therapy and then leave (outpatients), others stay overnight (inpatients). Putting the patient first is a challenge that requires not only a huge change in the mindset of all health care stakeholders, but also ways to measure patients’ satisfaction levels and discover what matters to them before, during and after their visits to any hospital. Patient quality initiatives with their softer, experiential focus than clinical review with its accurate and scientific measurement methods require different measurement techniques.
Often, the most effective means is to adapt from the research techniques widely practiced in social research and market research using surveys and objective self-completion questioning techniques. Without careful management, the measurement teams can drown in a sea of questionnaires. Surveys are labor intensive, so it makes sense to use software designed to handle investigations in this context and turn the process into something that can be controlled by the small teams that usually get this responsibility in the hospital.