West Park Hospital's patient-centered journey
Since 2004, West Park Hospital has subscribed to the Planetree philosophy of patient-centered care. Planetree is an international nonprofit organization that works with health care facilities to help
personalize, humanize and demystify the health-care experience.
Planetree is named after the sycamore tree, or plane tree, which Hippocrates sat under as he taught medicine was founded inin 1978 by Angela Theriot after her struggles as a family member of a patient.
Our commitment to the Planetree philsophy of patient-centered care is reflected in our organization's mission that "West Park Hospital will be an excellent regional healthcare provider by putting the patient first." Research also has shown that Planetree-affiliated facilities score better on HCAHPS patient-satisfaction surveys than the national average.
Planetree offers affiliates education, resources, tools, ideas and support for tranforming health care into a more managable experience for patients, visitors and famlies. Those efforts are centered around the 10 core components below, and included are some examples of how WPH supports those core tenets.
One example of this is the Long Term Care Center's Living Histories program. Volunteers and/or staff interview LTCC residents and gather the rich stories about their lives. Scrapbook pages are created based on the interview information. Staff can add pages with stories and thoughts they have about the resident creating a memory book for the resident. When the resident passes on, the book is gifted to family members. West Park Hospital also supports a Care Partners program, which informs and trains a caregiver or family member to assist a patient with after care once they've left the hospital.
Architectural & Interior Design Conducive to Health and Healing
The new WPH addition and Spirit Mountain Hospice House incoporate Planetree elements such as an abundance of natural light, healing garden concepts, a soothing palatte of colors, chapels and a home-like atmosphere, which have been shown to help patients heal. After becoming a Planetree affiliate, WPH also remodeled its Acute Care rooms, making them more home-like and all private, as well as its Women's Health Pavilion, giving it a birthing-center atmosphere. The exterior design of WPH's recent additions, including the Cathcart Health Center, Spirit Mountain Hospice House and hospital addition reflects the Western spirit andarchitecture conducive to Cody.
The Importance of the Nutritional & Nurturing Aspects of Food
In order to provide sustenance 24 hours a day
for family members, our Nutrition Services department stocks a vending machine daily with a variety of fruit, soups, sandwiches and desserts. WPH's food services also works to provide healthy alternatives to staff, patients and residents, including providing information such as nutrition information and Weight Watchers values for select dishes and holding healthy recipe contests for staff in order to generate new menu items. Becauseof the incredible value of WPH's lunch items, members of the Cody community often stop by for a bite to eat.
Empowering Patients through Information and Education
In collaboration with the Park County Library, in 2008, West Park Hospital opened the Planetree Health Resource Center in the Cody Branch Library. It was the first such partnership in the nation. The Planetree Health Resource Center includes reliable, vetted health information such as books; models; DVDs; computers, Internet and color printers; and children's materials covering a broad range of health and wellness topics. Our nursing staff also has put together preoperative patient information packets for total knee and hip replacements, and we distribute pocket-sized health records in our various facilities and clinics for patients to record medications, blood pressure numbers and other health information on an ongoing basis to share with their providers.
The Importance of Family, Friends and Social Support
Possibly the most comforting presence for patients is that of their family and friends. To that end, West Park Hospital offers patient-directed visiting hours, wireless Internet, greetings that can be sent to patients through our website and several family rooms and waiting areas. Arrangements also can be made for family members to stay overnight in our obstetrics department and Acute Care Unit on a case-by-case basis.
Spirituality: The Importance of Inner Resources
In addition to providing patients, residents and families chapel spaces for prayer and reflection, in 2011, the Healing Interventions Team began a third Thursday series to educate staff on the spiritual variations that can be used to help people heal. We have had sessions from specific religions to how journaling can help a person to heal. WPH also has a volunteer chaplain program, regular and holiday services for Long Term Care residents, and a patient's personal faith leader is always welcome to visit them at WPH. Four of our nurses also are parish nurses, sometimes called faith community nurses, who are nurses who practice whole-person health and spiritual care as members of their congregations in a variety of religious faiths throughout the world.
The Importance of Human Touch
West Park Hospital offers staff and the public massage therapy services in its in-house spa, complete with steam room, whirlpool tub and two private massage rooms. Surgical patients often experience less pain and anxiety after a complimentary preoperative massage, and massage can relieve some of the tension from expectant moms in our Women's Health department.
Healing Arts: Nutrition for the Soul
The walls of West Park Hospital's facilities are filled with local artwork. In the Monument wing, volunteers from the Cody Country Art League rotate works by local artists that are for sale; in the Spirit Mountian Hospice House and hospital addition, WPH staff and the WPH Foundation worked with local artists to get works donated. In addition, artists have painted murals on the hospital walls, in one case, a whole depiction of the Southfork Valley of the Shoshone River. In the Long Term Care Center, residents enjoy a full schedule of music and crafts thanks to the work of their activites department.
Recognizing that healing happens differently for different people, we offer complementary therapies such as Healing Touch, aromatherapy and Pet Therapy. Registered Pet Therapy dogs and their volunteer helpers are welcomed into the hospital for visits, and on any given day, Long Term Care residents may be interacting with dogs, cats, mini horses or even ferrets.
Outside of the hospital, WPH strives to support health and wellness around Cody, Park County and the Big Horn Basin. Through the work of the WPH Prevention & Wellness Office, all hospital campuses and facilities are tobacco-free, and the majority of local restaurants and bars have gone smoke-free. WPH also supports health- and wellness-related community initiatives such as the Park County Relay for Life and National Cancer Survivors Day -- a free ice-cream social and celebration for cancer survivors, caregivers, medical providers, family members and anyone else who has been affected by cancer -- and since 2010 have organized the Tails & Trails 5K Run/Walk in partnership with the Park County Animal Shelter. We also care about the health of our local environment, so we recycle newspaper, plastics, x-rays and office paper, and hold an annual cleanup of a portion of the Beartooth Highway.