Promoting quality patient care and privacy is the trend in hospitals around the world at the moment. In fact, here in Australia current hospital projects are underway with quality patient care at the center of their design and construction.

The aspect of these projects that we’re particularly interested in is the soundscape. Sound has far-reaching effects on a patients’ ability to heal. Including intentional sound design in hospitals can only benefit accreditation scores (such as HCAHPS in the U.S.), adherence to privacy regulations, and life safety standards.

While Australia does not use the HCAHPS scoring system, standards like this, along with the increasing emphasis on quality patient care, are in large part responsible for our development of Vocia®–Biamp’s voice evacuation and overhead paging DSP. Hitting the market in 2010, Vocia is EN 54-16 product certified, and EN 60849 and AS 60849 system verified.

Our newest additions to the Vocia line–the Text-to-Speech (TTS-1) and Text-to-Speech Nurse Call (TTS-1nc) Integration Package–were built specifically to service the increasing need of hospitals and healthcare facilities to change the way they sound to patients. That is, to sound quieter.

More than just helping their patients heal better though, hospitals designed for high quality sound also help staff work better. By creating multiple, ward-specific zones, facilities benefit from focused overhead paging that broadcasts pages to the staff that need to hear them.

This zoned approach allows for fewer pages, less noise, more efficient staff, and improved patient care. Healthier patients means happier patients, and happier patients means higher HCAHPS scores for hospitals.

AV Technology recently published a series of articles online in April 2013, and in their May 2013 print issue about the effects of sound on a person’s disposition. Whether related to healing, productivity, or concentration, sound does affect us. High quality sound systems can go a long way towards ensuring those effects are positive ones.