KGH has launched a campaign to encourage patients to wear day clothes rather than pyjamas during their stay in hospital.
The campaign – called End Pyjamas Paralysis – is designed at helping appropriate patients to stay active and mobile while in hospital and prevent the deconditioning that can result from long stays where people spend a lot of time inactive and in bed.
The campaign was launched on the Lamport and Twywell wards at the hospital on Tuesday (July 4) and the aim is to take the concept out to more of the hospital’s wards in the coming months.
Lamport and Twywell Wards’ matron Bridgette Stanforth and deputy general manager Dione Rogers organised the launch of the campaign.
Bridgette said: “For every 10 days spent in hospital research has shown that patients can lose 10 per cent of their muscle mass.
“In older patients this can mean they have ‘aged 10 years’ in terms of how long it normally takes for the gradual loss of muscle mass which happens as a natural part of the aging process.
“To offset this it has been shown that if you encourage patients to wear their normal clothes, and follow their normal routines, it has great benefits.
“It encourages them to be more active which prevents muscle loss.
“It makes them more positive, builds confidence and makes them feel ready to go back home.”
As part of the campaign staff will actively encourage patients to change out of their pyjamas or gowns and be more active to prevent decompensation.
Wearing normal clothes, and footwear, also has safety benefits as people who move around more are at less of a risk of pressure tissue damage (bed sores) and of falling – because they stay stronger and more mobile.
Dione said: “For patients this is about being more dignified, maintaining muscle mass, maintaining a good mental attitude and facilitating a swift return to physical health and mobility.
“This campaign originally started in New Zealand and is being used across the NHS and the world.
“On top of all the benefits it has for patients there is also a benefit for the hospital because more mobile and confident patients are better able to be discharged as soon as possible – so that frees up beds and helps us with flow through the hospital.”
Kettering General Hospital’s director of nursing and quality, Leanne Hackshall, said: “We have been investigating some of the best ways to support our patients and improve care and also encourage flow through the hospital.
“This is a very straightforward campaign that we intend to promote across the hospital to encourage greater independence.
“That was why we chose July 4 to launch it – because of the link with American Independence Day.”
During the launch day the hospital had high tea on Lamport and Twywell wards for patients and staff that was sponsored by Tesco.