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    Silentia Screens – What you need to know!

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    Silenita screens provide a hygienic solution to privacy, suitable for a clinical environment.

    Hygiene – reduce the risk of hospital acquired infections, through the EasyClean™, hard surface of the screen

    Dimensions – select screens from a wide range of lengths, heights and formats, to suit any situation necessary

    Colours and patterns – Silentia screens are available in a range of colours and patterns, making them suitable for patients in a range of ages.

    Easy to handle – can be easily folded in or out in the case of an emergency.

    range of colours

    About Silentia

    Providing privacy and hygiene in a practical manner for hospitals and patients.

    Designed and manufactured in Sweden, Silentia screens first arrived in Swedish hospitals back in 1990. The welcomed arrival of Silentia Screens represented an unprecedented approach to patient privacy. Replacing hospital curtains, Silentia screens provided many benefits, including increased daylight in hospital rooms, quick and easy to clean without the need for removal, and providing patients with the privacy they deserve, without obstructing ceiling lifts and other vital equipment. 

    Users have also noted the improved acoustic privacy that is enjoyed through the use of screens. Over the past 30 years, Silentia screens have revolutionised privacy for patients and are now recognised as the leading alternative in practical and flexible screens solutions within hospitals and care environments.

    What different category of products are available?

    Mobile Folding Screens

    Mobile Folding Screens

    The mobile folding screens are an easy way to quickly create a temporary screen at any time in any environment. Wall mounted screens can also be detached from a wall and mounted onto a trolley, where they can then be transported elsewhere. Silentia screens mobile solutions are what makes the system so flexible.

    The screen footprint made by the wheelbase, takes up minimal whilst providing the same level of stability as larger bases, through patented wheel design.

    Wall Mounted Screens

    In the scenario where more privacy is required for the patient, Fixed Privacy screens and room dividers have been specially developed to serve this purpose. Silentias fixed screens can also be used to quickly create spaces within a room, or create a room within a room, without requiring any alteration to the walls within the room.

    Using the EasyClick™ concept, Fixed privacy screens and room dividers can be attached to the floor or wall poles. Silentias Fixed screens are also available in a range of heights and lengths, to suit the requirement of the hospital or user. The Fixed screens are also compatible with Folding screens, which maximises the flexibility of the Silentia system.

    Mobile Bed End Screen

    Mobile Bed End Screen

    Similar to the Mobile Folding Screens, the Mobile Bed End Screens are also a quick and easy way to create a walled space within a room, in any situation. They can be used to enclose a bed, giving the patient both acoustic and visual privacy.

    Using the same patented wheelbase as the Mobile Folding Screen, the Mobile Bed End Screens base takes up little room and is less obstructive, whilst retaining the same stability.

    The Mobile End Screen can also be extended, with the option of two different length sizes- 1.5m (4’11”) or 2m (6’7”). When folded, the length is equal to 0.55m (21.6”).

    Shower Screen

    The shower room screen provides an easy and practical solution to patient privacy, whilst they are being showered. The shower room screen also keeps staff dry, as water is blocked as they clean the patient. Shower screens that are wall mounted can also be folded in and out of the wall, helping free space when the shower is not in use.

    ClearPanels

    ClearPanels are completely transparent and mobile screens that are ideal for monitoring patients from a distance, reducing the risk of passing infection. ClearPanels are also completely mobile, making them practical for opening up new spaces within rooms. ClearPanels meet the healthcare sector’s strict regulations on hygiene requirements, as the smooth and easily accessible cleaning surface can be easily disinfected.

    Keep it Clean™ is Silentias keyword for improved hygiene standards. With the demand for a hygienic area around patients rising every day, Silentia screen system provides the perfect solution to improving both patient privacy and hygiene. 

    With their exceptional flexibility and mobility, Silentias screens can be quick and easily adapted to any care setting. The EasyClean™ surface allow Silentia screens to be integrated into any cleaning routine, which will continuously improve hygiene around the patient.

    Why Silentia?

    – Hospital curtains are a major hygiene problem

    – 1 in 20 inpatients are infected through hospital acquired infections

    – Accounts for 30,000 avoidable deaths each year

    – This equates to 7 million days worth of hospital beds

    – 80,000 staff working days are lost due to infections

    – £2.7 Billion cost each year to the NHS

    Why are curtains a problem?

    – they are frequently touched by hospital staff, patients and hospital visitors, picking up bacteria and providing a ready vector for transmission.

    – it undermines hand hygiene. Washing of hands to improve hygiene is undermined, since curtains are often immediately touched, before and after providing care to a patient.

    – with the average hospital curtain contaminated after only two days of use and 92% of curtains contaminated after a week, risk of hospital acquired infection is high. Within hospitals, changing curtains is avoided, as it is costly, disruptive and creates downtime in hospital wards.

    Silentia screens do not require changing- simply wiped down during the rest of the normal cleaning routine. This reduces downtime and frees up additional space in busy wards. The easy wipe feature also eliminates bacteria and reduces hospital acquired infection. Unfortunately, hospital curtains can not be simply wiped down, providing a space for bacteria to thrive.

    Keep it clean

    With hard, smooth surfaces, Silentia screens are perfect for cleaning – over 99% of microorganisms can be cleaned from screen surfaces by wiping them with only a damp cloth. The otherwise impossible task of keeping curtains clean is no longer an issue, due to the practical solution that Silentia screens provide.

    The screens can be easily integrated into the existing cleaning routine along with the rest of the hard surfaces found on the ward, and are suitable for cleaning with powerful disinfectants that are normally used on the ward. Since the screens can be cleaned without removal from their original position, ward downtime is greatly reduced.

    Noise Travels

    Hospitals are busy places, often making them noisy with the sound of moving beds, staff and patients talking and the constant noise coming from equipment such as monitors and ventilators. Both staff and patients can enjoy the benefits of a quieter ward environment, however, hospital curtains have practically no effect in lower volume levels, and provide no acoustic privacy. Silentias screens however, have the ability to act as a sound barrier, reducing noise levels on the ward, helping staff and patients benefit.

    The use of fabric partitions such as curtains means a patient’s dignity and privacy suffers, since any private conversations can be heard across the ward. Since curtains do nothing to help this, the use of Silentia screens improves patient privacy and helps bring enjoyment back to private conversations with family or loved ones in the hospital ward.

    Noisy environments have been shown to have negative effects on patients in hospital, including a rise in blood pressure, greater levels of stress and tiredness, due to reduced sleep on a noisy ward, all of which have a negative effect on the recovery and wellbeing of the patient.

    Privacy and Dignity

    Privacy and Dignity

    Silentia Screens play a key part in enhancing patient privacy and dignity, whilst they are in hospital. Just as important as visual privacy, is acoustic privacy, which is greatly improved when using Silentias Screens.

    The sound absorbing properties of Silentias screens allow private conversations between patients, family or staff to take place only a few feet away from a neighbouring patient’s bed.

    The flexibility of the screens means they can be reshaped to form a cubicle around any bed, which encourages visitors to knock for attention, rather than peering through gaps in the curtains.

    The wall-mounted, folding screens come with lockable castors, which can be quiet and easily fixed into any position at any moment required. The EasyReturn™ feature of the screens means they can be simply folded out of the way and take up little space when unessential. In the case of an outbreak or contamination of a screen, the ability to simply wipe down the screens hard surface with cleaning fluid will minimise downtime on the ward.

    Silentia creates a comfortable environment for children or elderly patients

    Staying in a hospital away from family can be a scary and unusual experience for children. Silentias range of engaging images and coloured patterns that are found on the screens, help to create a warm, homely environment for younger patients, and serve as a distraction from the ward setting. Silentia screens are also available with story panels, in which staff can use as a talking point to comfort children in the hospital.

    comfortable environment for children or elderly patients

    Silentia offers customers the opportunity to select their own design theme for screens. Customers can select screen images for their paediatric department which compliment their screen designs.

    Similarly, for older patients, especially those suffering from dementia, screens with colourful or natural backgrounds can be implemented to create peace of mind or positive attitude. Dementia patients often have difficulty communicating with words, so the introduction of images around them can help them to communicate in their own way. Pain and anxiety can be reduced with views of nature, especially in patients suffering with dementia.

    People with dementia can also become confused with their surroundings, and may see a door and instinctively go through it, leaving the safety of their bed. In this case, screens act as a distraction and cover exits, keeping patients in their beds. Silentia Screens can also be used to create more private areas around a bed. This creates a calming effect, as often patients can become overwhelmed in large common areas.

    Screen flexibility when required

    Since Silentia Screens are easy to relocate or fold back into the wall, outpatient areas can be easily reconfigured for different purposes, or to meet the demand of the ward at the time, without compromising the privacy of the patient.

    Since more patients now seek care in an outpatient setting, the chances of catching a hospital acquired infection is greatly increased, especially in a ward where contaminated curtains are in use. 

    It is essential that these areas are kept clean, and Silentia Screens provide the most hygienic solution. With the easy wipe feature, bacteria can be easily removed from screens, and they are also less likely to become contaminated in the first place due to their smaller contact area.

    Consultation

    Silentia Screens

    Silentia Screens can be used to create flexible consultation areas, when a patient requires discussion of confidential information with medical staff.

    Silentias Screens excellent sound absorbing properties mean patients can enjoy the full confidentially they deserve, without worrying about their conversations being heard elsewhere on the ward.

    The screens also provide a makeshift room, where examinations can be carried out in full privacy.

    Due to their single touch point, the screens make these consultation areas a much more hygienic option than curtains, and the constant arrival of new patients would lead to curtains consistently becoming more contaminated.

    Bathroom

    Silentia Screens are fully waterproof, making them practical for use in the bathroom, when showering or bathing a patient. The screens allow a patient to shower in privacy, using the screen, whilst maintaining contact with staff- helping patients have the dignity they deserve. 

    Due to their mobility, the shower screens can provide flexible privacy, and can be easily be wheeled in or out if not required by the patient. Their waterproof design means screens are perfect for any wet environment, unlike curtains, which retain fluid.

    Silentias strategic solution to controlling infection

    In hospitals, to prevent the spread of bacteria and infection, a high standard of hygiene is necessary. In hospitals staff are used to washing hands, changing gloves, masks and bed linen for new patients. But hospital curtains are a different story- they are not regularly changed. 

    Due to the downtime and cost involved in changing curtains, hospitals tend to do this as infrequently as possible, and since they are touched by hundreds of different people every week, hospital curtains have become a huge hygiene problem for many hospital wards.

    Multiple studies have shown that curtains often placed between patients carry a large amount of antibiotic resistant bacteria. Despite efforts to improve hygiene by washing these curtains, studies have shown that this still does little to improve hygiene as curtains are quickly contaminated again. 

    A University of Michigan Medical Centre study found that contamination of patient partitions is common. One in five cultures tested in the study was found to contain multidrug resistant organisms, and these facilities reported changing curtains on a range of once a week to once annually. 

    A second study from the University of Iowa Carver College of Medicine also tested bacteria on curtains. Over a three week period, 43 curtains were tested twice a week. Results showed 26% contained antibiotic resistant bacteria, and 44% contained partially antibiotic resistant bacteria. 

    The study also showed that washing the curtains is ineffective. Of 13 new curtains, 12 of them were contaminated within a week. With doctors and visitors constantly touching these curtains, the risk of transferring bacteria onto others is high.

    The Solution

    Silentias privacy screens can be cleaned on a daily basis, and spot cleaned should they require it. In both the short and long term, it will reduce bacteria on the ward, and save time and money, as the complicated process of replacing hospital curtains is no more. Silentias screens are also a more environmentally friendly alternative to disposable curtains, as waste is greatly reduced.

    Case Studies

    Golden Jubilee National Hospital Glasgow

    In the past, large pull around curtains were used to close off the door to individual patient rooms, while doctors and nurses or family visitors were in discussion with patients. However, as Robert Gray, Senior manager for infection prevention and control pointed out, hospital curtains throw up a handful of issues. 

    Most notably their hygiene, the difficulty of cleaning them and the ongoing costs of laundry. When using curtains, the Glasgow hospital had three different sizes of curtain per ward, and spares, making the job of storage and cleaning and monumental task. However, since the arrival of Silentia Screens, their super flexible and easy to manoeuvre features has made them perfect for saving space on the ward. 

    Being easy to clean whilst providing privacy and dignity to the patient, the screens are the perfect hygienic and cost effective solution to hospital curtains. Their flexibility makes them perfect for creating a room within a room. The sound absorbing function of the screens has also shown them to decrease sound by 20%, making the hospital setting more enjoyable for patients and staff who work there.

    Robert explains how he organised a presentation with Silentia. Silentia came out and brought with them sample screens. In front of nursing staff, infection prevention managers and housekeeping, Silentia explained the benefits of the system and provided a full tutorial on their use. 

    Following the presentation, the Golden Jubilee ordered 157 screens. The hospital chose white screens, as they were neutral and staining shows up, making cleaning more effective. Since the screens were supplied, the Golden Jubilee has been introducing them one by one, as rooms become available, meaning there was no downtime or disruption on the ward during their installation. Robert explained how installation of the screens was simple, with fixing completed on a template and the screen secured on the wall.

    Thanks to Silentia’s patented hinges and removable castors, the screen is designed not to trap dirt, making it easy to clean. The hard surface of the screen is suitable for cleaning with most standard hospital disinfectants and stains from blood or other bodily fluids can be easily cleaned off. Robert pointed out there is a high level of cleaning available for the screens, something you couldn’t do with curtains, improving the hygiene on their ward. 

    The Golden Jubilee have integrated cleaning the screens into their normally cleaning routine, ensuring the screens receive cleaning on a daily basis, reducing bacteria on the ward, where hospital curtains which previously were changed sometimes as infrequently as every month would’ve hung.

    Anne McKinley, staff nurse, added how some of the patients have even been enjoying the new addition of the screens, saying some had commented at how amazed they were at the cleanliness on the ward. She added some patients like watching tv late into the night, and the sound absorbing feature of the screens allows them to do so on the ward without distracting other patients from their night’s sleep. 

    Housekeeper Mary Filshie, who has worked at the hospital for ten years noted that the changing of curtains that became soiled was a disruptive process that could delay the use of a room, a big problem during busy hours. She also commented on the ease at which the screens can be cleaned. 

    Since they are easy to move, all parts of the screen can easily be cleaned, with a damp cloth and disinfectant. Flora Robertson, a patient at the hospital, said the screens give you immediate privacy, without feeling shut into a room, the system looks easy to use.

     

    Cantonal Hospital, Uri

    Silvia Rosery, who is the head of Nursing, Therapy and Patient Procedures at the Cantonal Hospital in Switzerland, said she initially had doubts due to using other alternatives which had failed, but after a trial period of Silentia screens, the benefits convinced her that this was the right option. 

    Now Silvia says, the whole system has been fully integrated and is a fantastic new innovation on the market, no one wants to see the old curtains back. The effect the screens have on the room is striking. Now the room always looks neat and the hygiene is excellent.

    Silvia admits she had concerns over the potential for noise when moving the screens, based on past experience with other medical products. But since using the screens, Silvia says she’s delighted to see they’ve been completely quiet. She also comments on the quality of the screens, saying you can tell they’ve been made to last and work well. 

    Of particular note was the quality of the wheels, which Silvia says was partly what convinced them to make the change. The staff at the hospital were also impressed with the practical functionality of the screens. After just the short trial period, staff were happy with the ease in which the screens could be moved around the hospital ward.

    Silvia informed us that before screens, she heard of patient complaints regarding the curtains at least every week. Complaints ranging from the dirtiness of the curtains, the lack of washing, or curtains not being returned to the ward on time. Since installing screens, these complaints have stopped, showing both staff and patients have been enjoying the new addition of the screens.

     

    Männedorf Hospital, Switzerland

    At Männedorf Hospital, Silentia Screens help patients feel at home, whilst providing the ward with an excellent standard of hygiene. The personal touch added by the screens is especially as important for younger patients during their stay in hospital. 

    Peter Burkard, Head of Accident and Emergency Treatment at Männedorf Hospital, says they are extremely pleased they opted for the Silentia system, and the opportunity for a trial run on site helped them greatly to make their decision. Rebuilding the entire A&E treatment wing, the hospital were hoping for a flexible, hygienic solution for providing privacy in rooms with two beds, and Silentia provided what they needed. 

    After a year of use on the ward, Peter Burkard says the screens have met everyone’s high expectations, and have four major benefits-

    Optimum Hygiene – The screens are quick and simple to clean, they can be disinfected at any point, without the hassle of removal, and therefore decrease downtime on the ward.

    Flexibility ­- Screens can be repositioned throughout the room. One large area can be turned into two smaller rooms when needed. Screens can also be easily tucked away into corners when full room capacity is required, and take up less room than a curtain rail.

    More space when time is of the essence – In the case of an emergency, the screens are so practical and easy to move, they can be quickly manoeuvred in or out of the way in a room, to help the treatment of a patient.

    Patient Privacy – The screens can be used in rooms to allow the door to stay open, whilst providing patients with privacy. This allows staff to monitor patients and keep an ear out for equipment whilst ensuring patients privacy.

    Finally Peter highlighted how the friendly illustrations keep children calm, and provide a welcoming homely feel to the ward, which is so important when young children are away from home. He noted how staff find it easy to engage in conversation with children on the ward, by using illustrations found on the screens to guide conversation.

     

    HFR Fribourg, Switzerland

    Gilles Jégou, Clinical Expert in HFR Fribourg, pointed out that many patients that come into the ward, comment on the brightness of the ward, thanks to daylight arriving in through the translucent screens. The screens also reduce the patients feeling of being enclosed inside a room, whilst retaining their privacy. When designing their new intensive care unit, Gilles says they looked at a number of design concepts but each had its flaws. Simply an open room, gave staff quick access to patients, but provided no privacy for patients, and was also a noisy environment. 

    On the other hand private rooms provided a quiet environment with full privacy but was not practical for staff who needed to keep a close eye on patients. This is where Silentia Screens provided the ideal solution. It allowed patients full privacy, and reduced noise on the ward through the sound absorbing panels, whilst allowing staff quick access to all patients.

    Gilles also points out that screens are much more practical than curtains from the point of view of space in a room. Screens can be easily folded away and take up less space than curtains when stored like so. Screens also do not interfere with ceiling equipment, unlike curtains. Hoists, other medical equipment and lights are all found on the ceiling, and since a curtain reel must run along the top of the roof, these can often be interfered with.

    Finally Gilles comments on the ease at which the screens can be cleaned, and how they pose a much more hygienic solution than curtains in the ward. Not only do the curtains carry antibiotic resistant bacteria, the time and monetary cost of cleaning and washing curtains is large, and they result in down time on the hospital ward.

     

    Norfolk Community Health and Care NHS Trust

    Beth Kimber, head of infection prevention at Norfolk Community Health and Care NHS trust, talks about how Silentias Screens have won plaudits from patients, visitors and staff at the hospital since their installation. Other staff at the hospital commented that the light let in by the screens was an added advantage of them, whilst at the same time maintaining patients dignity. 

    The curtains in the hospital before screens were installed were heavy too, meaning they blocked light and made the ward very dark during the day. Because of their weight, any time they were to be changed, a porter would have to come and assist in their removal. This would cause disruption on the ward and cost unnecessary staff hours. There were also patient complaints that the curtains did not cover the whole bed, meaning patients did not have full privacy, and any breeze would move the curtains.

    Beth says the hospital is always on the look out for new ways to improve infection control, and therefore was pleased with the opportunity to see a presentation from Tim Clarke, Silentia UK director, on the screens. Beth admits she had initial concerns over the stability of the screens, but after seeing how their solid attachment to the wall, she knew there would be no issues. She says now they are fully implemented staff all love them and the ward looks a lot neater than before when it had curtains.

    One satisfied patient, Myra Bannon was very pleased with the screens. She commented on how they were easy to use, and no problem for family visitors arriving to open and close. She also enjoyed the privacy provided by the screen, saying she felt confident she could have a private conversation, due to the sound absorbing features of the screen panelling.

    Beth explains how over time the screens are cost effective, as their high standard durable build means they won’t have to be replaced for many years, compared to the ongoing cost of changing curtains. She added that the screens give patients the confidence they need, when receiving private treatment, that it will take place in complete privacy, there are no gaps and no curtains will blow around. 

    As a result, Beth mentioned that staff see this hospital as a flagship building, and they all appreciate the many advantages that the screens come with. The hospital still has a new ward awaiting approval, and Beth added that Silentias screens will be installed there too, highlighting how pleased the staff have been with their practicality.

     

    Queen Ingrid’s Hospital, Greenland

    Queen Ingrid’s Hospital in Greenland proved that no customer is too far away, or hard to access, even when they are 3500km away, only a little extra customer service is required. Niels Jensen, who was in charge of the rebuilding project at Queen Ingrid’s, said he was most impressed by the customer service provided by Silentias Henrik Fribo-Søndergaard, throughout the process of transitioning from curtains to screens. 

    Niels was most impressed with how Henrik offered to send out additional parts with the screens to ensure the installation process went smoothly, as he understood any missing parts could result in long delays due to the customers geographical location.

    For both hygiene and practical reasons, Niels did not want curtains in the new ward, and was therefore in no doubt that Silentias Screens were the right choice for the new department. Niels said he’d seen Silentias Screens in wards before, and new just how practical and hygienic they were. Since getting them installed, he’s been delighted with the sturdiness of them, saying they can be pulled around and are stable on their wheels. This is an important, especially in a smaller department which deals with everything. The screens can be quickly pulled out, or tucked away neatly in the corner taking up minimal room, depending on the needs of the staff.

     

    BB Sophia, Sweden

    Siri Lilliesköld, a paediatric and developmental nurse in the BB Sophia Hospital in Sweden, talks about the importance of a harmonious environment for patients in the hospital. Siri discusses how Silentias screens with warming artwork are used in the neonatal unit, where the sickest babies in the hospital are treated. 

    At this point, the parents of the babies will be experiencing high stress whilst they spend the majority of their time in this unit ward. Using Silentias artwork screens, Siri hopes to create an environment in the unit where parents can feel at ease and find it a restful place to be. Siri talks about avoiding an institutional feel, whilst creating a space where parents can feel close to their child.

    Siri says the artwork screens have been warmly welcomed on the ward. They have received positive feedback, that the screens help to create a restful environment and have a calming effect on younger children. He added that flexibility of the screens to create a room within a room, and clean quickly when required was an added benefit.

    Annika Jorge, an interior designer with 3dO explains how case studies in recent years have shown patients recover faster in colourful environments which are pleasant to stay in. 3dO believes in the importance of customizing products and enhancing them for your own needs, rather than just using standard designs. Silentia were therefore happy to produce the panels using 3dO’s own unique design. 3dO also chose Silentia due to the transparent designs their screens offer. Allowing light into the ward is essential, as it helps patients in recovery, something hospital curtains can not offer.

    Soerlandet Hospital, Norway

    Receiving around 50 -80 patients every day, the Soerlandet Hospital emergency room sees many different cases of patients come through its door every day. Therefore, an efficient system for screening patients through the emergency room is required, and with so many patients coming through every day, good hygiene is so important.

    Lecturer Nurse, Martin Hauge also pointed out how the screens benefit patients. The sound absorbing panels make the ward much quicker, and a more relaxing place for patients to be whilst-they-wait treatment. The sound absorbing panels also allow private conversations to take place in the emergency room, without worry of being overheard by others. 

    Since installing the screens, the ward has become much lighter as well. The emergency room required tall screens, and when the old curtains were in place, they blocked the light, making the room very dark. However, Silentia installed tall screens with daylight tops to allow light into the ward through the windows.

    Altstatten Hospital, Switzerland

    Tanja Gygax, purchasing manager at the Altstatten Hospital in Switzerland, says she was positively surprised by the feedback received from staff following the installation of the Silentias screens in the hospital. She explains the whole process of the installation, the quality and the design have been extremely positive.

    The cardiology examination room in the hospital is often used for two different examinations at the same time. An ECG examination with one patient on the bed whilst the other receives a physiological test. 

    Initially the hospital wanted to divide the room into two rooms, using a permanent dividing wall, but this would mean building work in the ward, which would be costly, cause noise and put the room out of use for a period of time. This is where Silentia screens become the solution, however. Using a 1.85m screen, fixed to the roof, Silentia were able to fully divide the room, giving privacy to both patients receiving treatment. A fully flexible solution, since screens can be easily folded open if required, or completely removed within 30 minutes.

    After their installation, Petra Maier, team leader said the Silentia solution meets their expectations perfectly. They were also seriously impressed with the installation. It only took one and a half hours and barely made any noise or dust on the ward. Petra has since realised the full advantages of the screen, since its so flexible, the room can be opened up into one large space should it be required, whilst they can still enjoy the privacy of two spaces should two patients be in.

     

    Herlev Hospital, Denmark

    The Herlev Hospital in Denmark only ran a short trial run, and in that time they were so impressed with the benefits of Silentia screens, they decided to replace the neurology wards curtains with Silentia screens. Whilst reducing waste and improving hygiene on the ward, the screens have also freed up more space beside the beds since the screens take up less room than the curtains. 

    Mona B. Andersen, nursing secretary in the neurology department, explains that the ease at which the screens can be cleaned is another added benefit. The traditional curtains in the old ward also used to be so big they had to be taken down if not in use. A process which took time and required multiple people to do so. Not to mention in the case of an emergency, it was not quick or handy to get the curtains up quickly.

    Silentia Screens are designed ergonomically using lightweight materials and solid wheels. As a result, they are easy to quickly move around the ward, in and out of rooms, and always fold up automatically when pushed back in. Their smooth surfaces meet hospital hygiene requirements, as they can be easily cleaned using a hospital disinfectant found on the ward. Even the wheels can be easily removed and washed in a dishwasher. 

    With a wide range of patients coming into the ward, men and women, young and old, it was important for the hospital that the new system would work efficiently and could help hospital staff productively screen patients through the ward. With the ease of use of the screens and their mobility making it easy to quickly open or close spaces, the hospital are delighted with the system since it works so well.

     

    Køge Hospital, Denmark

    It’s estimated that 1 in 10 Danes that has been admitted to hospital has picked up a hospital acquired infection during their stay. This figure is not only a threat to the health and safety of individuals in hospital but also shows the larger burden placed on hospital staff as patients become sicker. 

    There is often a large emphasis put on patient bed hygiene, with sheets and bed linen changed between every patient that enters the hospital. But what about patient curtains? Are they changed between patients? The answer is no; and studies have shown curtains between patient beds carry large amounts of antibiotic-resistant bacteria, making them a catalyst for hospital acquired infections.

    Clearly there is a need for a more hygienic solution to patient privacy in hospitals, and that is why Silentia Screens have continually been growing and making their way into more and more hospitals around the world. The smooth, durable surface of the screens mean they can be cleaned using the majority of powerful hospital disinfectants, without being removed, and therefore can simply be integrated into the daily cleaning routine with the rest of the walls, windows and floor. 

    An increasing number of hospitals have invested in Silentias Screens after recognising their practical benefits, with a recent example being the Køge Hospital in Denmark, where they have just installed Silentia Screens throughout the anaesthesiology ward. Already staff members have commented on their preference of the screens, saying their simplicity, hygiene and manoeuvrability make them much more practical than curtains.

    Research from the US shows that curtains between patients can quickly become contaminated with infectious bacteria. A 2011 study from the University of Iowa 26% of curtains contained antibiotic resistant bacteria and a further 44% had bacteria partly antibiotic resistant. Every time patients, staff or visitors open or close the curtains, they risk passing on their own bacteria, or else picking up other bacteria from the contact with the curtain.

     

    Odense University Hospital, Denmark

    The question on the mind of ward nurse Pia Dybdal, Odense University Hospital, was whether they should stick with traditional hospital curtains, or invest in Silentia Screens- to help them decide, the hospital had a trial run of 18 new screens. Pia admits that before the trial she was sceptical about the introduction of the folding screens, worrying about their flexibility around the ward- but since trial running the screens in the hospital, Pia completely recommends them. 

    Saying the decision was completely in favour of the screens, Pia called them the screening solution of the future. They have major hygiene benefits and are attractive to look at. They give rooms that were previously dark with curtains a light, welcoming feel, and both the staff and patients have been very pleased with the screens since their introduction. 

    The hospital have since put plans in place for an extension to the surgical ward and are so impressed with the screens, they have put a new order in to fill this new extension.

    Hvidovre Hospital, Denmark

    In the Hvidovre Hospital in Denmark, they now have 14 sets of screens installed in the wards around patient beds. Henrik Fribo-Søndergaard, CEO of Silentia ApS, says they first started installing the screens in the Hvidovre Hospital after an evaluation of solutions and a trial period with the hospital. The evaluation allowed Silentia to tailor a solution to suit the needs of the ward in full and Frank got the impression that Silentia was selected for its hygiene, good design and flexibility.

    Odense University Hospital, Denmark

    The project at the Odense University Hospital in Denmark was one of Silentia’s biggest projects, but also one of their most successful. Before the installation of the screens, Silentia and the Odense University Hospital met multiple times, and arranged several demonstrations and briefings of the products at the hospital. This gave the Odense Hospital the opportunity to trail the screens and experience their full benefits before making the decision to move to screens.

    During these demonstrations and briefings, Silentia were able to identify and tailor a screen solution to everyone’s needs, that all staff members were pleased with. At the Odense, they opted for low level screens, as this was the best solution for staff and helped them with their daily routine. 

    Whilst many customers opt for full height screens, to provide full privacy for the patient, other customers prefer the low height screens. This allows medical staff to keep the monitoring of patients constant, as patients can easily be viewed over the low level screen.

    The advantages of the Silentia System

    The main advantage of Silentia Screens is the improved level of hygiene that screens can bring to a ward which previously had curtains. The hard surface of the screen means they can be cleaned with any hospital disinfectant, during the rest of the hospital cleaning process. The screens can also be cleaned in situ. Unlike curtains, they do not require removal for cleaning, saving staff hours which also encourages a cleaner environment, since cleaning is an easy task.

    The sturdy design of the screens also means they are an excellent alternative to curtains. Using Silentias patented wheel design, the screens are stable whilst easy to manoeuvre. They fold in and out of the wall with ease, unlike other alternative retractable screen solutions, which can often be difficult to move due to retracting issues.

    Silentia screens also provide excellent visual and verbal privacy, as the sound absorbing panels reduce noise on the ward and allow private conversations between patients, family or staff to take place with others only a few feet away.

    Unlike curtains, Silentia screens do not require a roof attachment. This means the screens are less obstructive than curtains, and do not interfere with roof mounted equipment such as monitors or lights and other fittings. The low-level screens also allow staff to easily monitor a patient, without the need to touch and open curtains every time they wish to see them. This increases hygiene and makes the job of staff more efficient as it is easier to monitor patients.

     

    Why are hospital acquired infections such a problem?

    Hospital acquired infections (HAIs) occur as a result of cross contamination in hospital wards, and every year lead to thousands of unnecessary deaths, as a result of poor hygiene in wards. HAIs also result in thousands of missed working hours each year, due to sick staff and cost the NHS millions due to the extra burden placed on hospitals. Hospital curtains pose a huge problem to the health service, as they greatly increase the chances of patients or staff picking up a hospital acquired infection. 

    With curtains being touched multiple times a day by staff, patients and visitors, they are often found to carry large amounts of antibiotic resistant bacteria. Since curtains can not be easily cleaned, as this requires their removal and increases downtime on hospital wards, often they are left carrying bacteria and act as a threat to individuals in the hospital. This is why Silentia screens are a hygienic solution to replacing hospital curtains. 

    Since they can be easily cleaned without removal, bacteria on the ward is greatly reduced and hospital acquired infections should be reduced. Even the patented wheels can be removed from the screens and washed in a dishwasher if required. This highlights the durability of the screens and shows just how practically they can be cleaned. Since the screens can be cleaned with the majority of hospital disinfectants and a damp cloth, they can easily be integrated into the daily cleaning routine of the hospital, ensuring bacteria is constantly removed from the ward.

    Silentia screens can also be used to quickly create a room within a room. This is especially handy in the case of emergencies, or when space is short on the hospital ward. Alternatively, if a larger space is required, the screens can easily be folded away to make one larger room out of two previously smaller spaces. Staff and patients have also been extremely impressed with Silentia screens on the ward, saying they look professional and much cleaner than hospital curtains. Patients enjoy both visual and audible privacy and say the appearance of the screens helps to create a welcoming environment.

    Silentia screens have a three point easy concept. EasyClick™, EasyReturn™ and EasyClean™. Silentia screens are easy to click together, meaning if you require a larger screen, it is easy to join panels from other screens together to extend the size. The high quality wheels found on the screens are easy to remove and reinstall with just one click. 

    The EasyReturn™ feature of the screens makes it easy to fold screens back when they are not in use. The lightweight feature of the panels combined with the patented panels makes this easy. All staff members and visitors in the hospital find the screens easy to move about the ward, thanks to these practical features. The one touch point on the screens also reduces the spread of bacteria in the hospital ward, as the point can be easily cleaned when required. 

    Finally, the EasyClean™ feature of the screens also greatly reduces bacteria in the hospital ward. The hard surfaces of the screens can be easily cleaned with disinfectant and a damp cloth, without the need of removal. This speeds up the cleaning process and means staff are more inclined to keep the screens clean, as cleaning will not increase downtime on the ward.

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