New Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) rules were created to protect the privacy of a patient’s health information. As a result, HIPAA has spurred on a greater awareness for – and sensitivity to – patient privacy across multiple spectrums in hospital settings.

Recent studies suggest that lack of privacy, excessive noise and glare can create stress, including faster heart rates and increased blood pressure, in both adults and babies. Healthcare facilities are now looking more closely at how privacy should be reflected in terms of visibility, light filtering and noise in all patient spaces.

Looking at privacy from all angles

As new hospitals are built and existing ones renovated, forward-thinking designers are focusing more on privacy for healing-centered approaches:

  • Private rooms – To speed healing, reduce the risk of infection and reduce noise.
  • Visual privacy – For patient rooms, examination rooms, ICUs and recovery areas.
  • Acoustical privacy – For more tranquil spaces to aid patient rest and recuperation.
  • Adjustable lighting –To manage glare and darken patient spaces as required.
  • Private nurses stations –To prevent casual views of patient information and provide flexible levels of visibility into patient areas.

Adjustable privacy – a move towards integrated cord-free louvers

Hermetically sealed glass units combining louvers within glass are designed specifically to provide an infection-resistant patient privacy solution for hospitals and other healthcare facilities. Their advanced louvered glazing technology controls vision, sound, light and infection.

Why integrated louvers?

  • Best solution for privacy – No other solution on the market offers comparable levels of flexible vision control and acoustical privacy.
  • Best ROI – Ranked tops for long-term durability, functionality and quality.
  • Best solution for infection control – Hermetically sealed louvers are dust and germ-free.
  • Best solution for light control – Superior filtering control for daylighting or darkening as needed.
  • Best solution for sound control – Increased airspace thickness significantly reduces noise for much quieter patient areas.
  • Easy to install – Fits more setting conditions for doors, windows, transoms, sliding doors and sidelights.
  • Easy to operate – Multiple reliable and user-friendly operating mechanisms. No more cords!
  • No design limitations – Available in customizable shapes and sizes for any requirements.
  • Glazing options – Available with fire-rated, polycarbonates and specialty glazing options for radiology labs, X-ray facilities and more.

Compelling advantages over other solutions

  • Curtains provide no acoustical privacy, gather dust and dirt, are difficult to clean, and do not provide adjustable levels of visibility.
  • Blinds accumulate dirt and dust, have holes and gaps, and offer no sound control.
  • Venetian blinds-between-glass are prone to damage and misalignment, and are not known for long-term durability.
  • Frosted or sandblasted glass that mimics the lines of blinds offers only a partial solution. Visibility is limited, but not adjustable.
  • Liquid crystal glass solutions infringe on patient privacy when the switch is turned off to reveal clear glass, don’t provide adjustable levels of seclusion, and are more expensive.

Want to learn more?

Read HOSPITAL DESIGN AND HIPAA: The Changing Face of Patient Privacythe new industry white paper on healthcare design and privacy