Nachtdienst Catharina Ziekenhuis Eindhoven foto René Manders -Foto Meulenhof

Blue glasses, vibrating beds, and salads to stay fit during night shifts

Published: 05th December 2019 Last updated: 12th December 2019

How can nurses get through night shifts okay? Students of Tilburg University together with the Eindhoven Catharina Hospital are looking for a solution to this problem. They have mounted three experiments to see if these yield positive results: colored glasses, special beds for power naps, and healthy meals.

Emergency care manager Marieke van Schijndel supervises the project on behalf of Catharina Hospital. “We can’t get rid of night shifts. They’re an integral part of hospital care. But we can make them more comfortable for our nurses,” she explains on the hospital’s website. How this can best be done is now being investigated.

Nurses in pediatric wards will be given glasses that can be fitted with blue or red lenses. Blue light keeps people awake; red light has the opposite effect. During working hours, the nurses wear the blue glasses; at home they can put on the red ones. The intensive care ward is fitted with a special bed that can vibrate and play relaxing music, ideal for quick power naps.

The third experiment takes place in the medium care ward, where twice a night the nurses share a meal consisting of salads, wraps, and the like. Van Schijndel: “Good food keeps you fit.”

Van Schijndel’s own ward – emergency care – is not left out of the experiments. Indeed, they are getting the whole package: blue glasses, slumber bed, and healthy food. 

Source: Univers Online