Foodservice Equipment & Supplies

AUG 2019

Foodservice Equipment & Supplies magazines is an industry resource connecting foodservice operators, equipment and supplies manufacturers and dealers, and facility design consultants.

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H ospital stays can be stressful and unpleasant, with patients typically having little to no control over what happens to them while they're there. That's in part why modern, hotel-style room service programs remain so popular in healthcare facilities: They put control over meal selections and delivery times squarely in patients' hands. Happier patients are one result — patient satisfaction rates typically rise signi•cantly when quality room service programs are instituted. But studies show that the bene•ts of offering on- demand room service with diverse and extensive menu options go signi•cantly farther. Room service, it turns out, can also help to speed recovery because patients eat more and healthier foods. And by choosing what they actually want to eat and having it delivered when they actually want to eat it, less food is wasted. "The option to have the exibility to order food on your own schedule, with a variety of choices, is appealing to patients, especially to certain groups," notes Laura Knight, vice president of Patient Services for Morrison Healthcare, based in Atlanta. "For example, maternity patients are experiencing new schedules and patterns in their day. Eating at a speci•c time doesn't always work for them. Oncology patients, who can experience side effects of medication that can make them feel like eating at various times of the day, appreciate the option to order when they're feeling well." A national food and nutrition services company that is part of Compass One Healthcare, Morrison Healthcare serves more than 750 hospitals and healthcare systems. What's important to keep in mind, says Knight, is that one size doesn't •t all. "While there are patients who resonate well with the exibility of room service, it's not a one-size-•ts-all pro- gram," Knight notes. "Our healthcare environment is shifting to include more older adults with a higher acuity of illness. Patients may not be able to order or plan in advance to make the call to order their meals. The personal connection of a patient dining associate who can assist with their selections at the bedside and bring their meals at a set delivery time can not only ease their minds but aids in the scheduled treat- ments that nursing is often tasked to juggle." HOSPITAL HOSPITALITY: Room Service Delivers | By Dana Tanyeri | AUGUST 2019 FOODSERVICE EQUIPMENT & SUPPLIES 23

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