Eindhoven, The Netherlands – Royal Philips Electronics (NYSE: PHG, AEX: PHI) announced today that it is stepping up its healthcare research into healing environments by opening a dedicated research facility at its Eindhoven-based Research Laboratories. Based on Philips’ in-depth understanding of the hospital patient experience and implemented through the intelligent use of technology, the healing environments concepts aim to accelerate and improve treatment outcomes, while simultaneously reducing the stress and anxiety associated with hospitalization and hospital-based treatment.
One of the concepts that is being studied uses soothing lighting and calming video images and sounds, and is aimed at reducing the stress levels of patients who are in the preparation room awaiting a PET-CT scan. PET-CT is an imaging technology that is predominantly used to facilitate the diagnosis and staging of cancer and the PET-CT preparation room has been identified as one of the most stressful environments for cancer patients.
"There is an increasing body of evidence to suggest that patient-friendly comforting environments not only reduce anxiety levels but also promote the healing process itself," said Henk van Houten, general manager Philips Research. "The opening of the Hospital Area is a clear expression of our commitment to this important new area of healthcare research, which leverages Philips unique expertise in healthcare, lighting and consumer lifestyle. It is further evidence of Philips’ aim to deliver meaningful innovations that improve people’s lives."
As people’s access to information continues to increase, a new generation of patients is emerging who are knowledgeable about their medical conditions and therapy options, and therefore demand greater choice in where and how they are treated. As a result, hospitals are becoming increasingly people-focused to satisfy those demands. Offering an environment and an experience that helps patients cope with a difficult period in their lives is one way in which hospitals can achieve that objective.
Philips is a pioneer in the ambient healing environments domain with Ambient Experience, a solution incorporated in medical imaging rooms and emergency departments. Architecture, design and technology (e.g. lighting, sound and projection) have been integrated to create a healthcare space that is designed to reduce the anxiety and increase the comfort of children that are being scanned, while improving the hospital workflow.
Moving further in this new field, Philips will research new healing environment solutions in the Hospital Area, in scenarios as close as possible to those that are encountered in real hospitals. Other projects that are well advanced and that have already moved into the Hospital Area include the prevention of delirium in intensive care units and the adaptive personalization of patient rooms.