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Creating an Enriched Environment for rehabilitation patients

Project Status: 

Historically, rehabilitation patients report low levels of activity outside of business hours and over the weekends. Limited access to stimulating and enjoyable activities and routines can lead to boredom, frustration, and low mood.

This project aimed to trial implementing a mobile model of environmental enrichment (EE) for rehabilitation patients at Redland Hospital to improve the patient and family experience and health outcomes. Environmental enrichment refers to an intervention to increase motor, sensory, cognitive, and social activity by providing a stimulating environment. At Redland Hospital, this has involved providing patients in Macleay Ward with access to an interactive and stimulating activity trolley (‘EE on Wheels’). Eligible rehabilitation patients have had access to a number of stimulating activities such as listening to music, reading, completing puzzles and word games, and accessing media from handheld and desktop devices.

The implementation of environmental enrichment has been trialled in several rehabilitation units nationally and internationally and has been correlated with improvements in physical functioning, psychosocial outcomes, and quality of life. This project is one of the first in Queensland to translate the emerging evidence and trial implementation of EE in a virtual rehabilitation program within an acute medical ward.

The project was implemented from May 2016 – February 2017 with analysis of the research data component currently underway. The trolley continues to be accessible to eligible rehabilitation and maintenance-care patients on Macleay ward and is operated by hospital volunteers and referring clinicians. Evaluation of patient and staff experiences in having access to the trolley will continue to be undertaken and reviewed, with the project forming a significant component of patient-centered care activities on the diverse Macleay ward of Redland Hospital.

Aims & Goals: 

This project aimed to trial implementing an Enriched Environment (EE) for rehabilitation patients at Redland Hospital to improve the patient and family experience and health outcomes.

Lead Service / Stream: 
Keywords: 
Rehabilitation, Enriched environment, Multidisciplinary
Last updated 20 September 2018