Effects of Enhanced Family Visitation in Postanesthesia Services

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Purpose:The purpose of this project was to assess the impact of an enhanced postanesthesia unit (PACU) family visitation program on surgical services staff.Design:This project was a cross-sectional study using a mixed methods approach.Methods:A survey, including scaled and qualitative items, was administered to surgical services personnel.Findings:A significant positive change occurred in respondents' feelings of comfort when providing emotional support to family members, and 2013 respondents agreed more often than earlier respondents with the notion that family members should have the option to visit in the PACU. Qualitative data showed continuing concerns with space, privacy, and interference with patient care.Conclusions:Implementation of enhanced visiting policies in the PACU is associated with positive changes in staff attitudes toward family visitation and no diminishment of staff commitment to family support generally, but barriers to family visitation are persistent and substantial.

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