WINNIPEG – The Winnipeg Regional Health Authority (WRHA) is looking at easing restrictions on visiting hours at hospitals.
They’re considering adopting an initiative by the Canadian Foundation for Healthcare Improvement that recommends 24-hour visitor access.
The Foundation says 24-hour access could result in a reduced length of stay, fewer medication errors and better informed medical assessments.
The WRHA’s Lori Lamont tells 680 CJOB the “Better Together” initiative provides a compelling argument for round-the-clock visiting hours.
“We really want to promote families and whoever that family structure is that’s important to the patient… to be partners in the care that we’re providing,” says Lamont. “If we restrict their access, we really can’t live up to that and promote it in a way we’d like to.”
Lamont says this new policy would be a compromise with existing restrictions as only close family members would have 24-hour access for now.
Due to this initiative, the WRHA is one of 50 Canadian hospital and healthcare organizations reviewing visiting policies.
A poll conducted by the Foundation in 2015 indicated that nine out of ten Canadians wanted improved visitor hours but at the time, only one in three hospitals had accomodating visiting policies.