It is essential that design of bed clothes in healthcare and other industries e.g. hospitality are suitable for the personnel when they perform bedding tasks. The bed clothes are important not just for patients’ experience of healthcare service, but also for serving as tools for nurses satisfaction and performance in the bed making task. Ergonomics and work load of the nurses are directly affected from design and development of product characteristics (material, weight etc.) and related tasks to make the bedding. Still, there is a question of how bed making can be improved considering from aspects related to work (e.g. time), ergonomics and emotional satisfaction for nursing personnel.
This study focuses on affective and ergonomic effects of making patient beds for nursing personnel, by using an Affective (Kansei) Engineering approach comparing a new bedding system with the conventional bedding. In principle, the main objective is to understand the nurses´ perceptions towards the bed making task with the new product compared with conventional bed clothes (conventional bedding material), based on affective, ergonomics and discomfort criteria.
Fourteen female nurses (N=14) employed at the heart intensive care unit of a hospital in western Sweden participated in the study. Qualitative and quantitative methods were employed to investigate the bedding systems. All participants performed three trials with the new and the conventional bedding in randomized order. Affective evaluation included measurement of subjective responses with Kansei words (expressing feelings), measurement of overall experiences and comparison between the two bedding systems. Productivity related measurements included task descriptions and measurement of work cycle times. Measurements of physical load included calculation of static compression forces for the postures of forward bending and hand elevation above shoulders, related time durations and frequencies and as well as discomfort evaluations.
In order to examine participants’ affective responses paired samples t- test was employed. Correlation analysis was applied to test associations between Kansei words. Independent sample t-test was used to analyze the bedding time durations. Paired samples t- tests were performed to compare the new and the conventional system regarding compression forces in forward bending, hand elevation above shoulders, frequencies and time durations for the two postures and to evaluate overall experiences.Wilcoxon signed rank test was performed to investigate participants’ perceived levels of discomfort for different body parts. For statistical analysis of data SPSS 15.0 (SPSS, 2006) and Minitab 15.0 were used. For the analysis of physical loads, the University of Michigan's 3D Static Strength Prediction Program (3DSSPP) (6.0.2) was used to compute static compression forces on lower back for forward bending on the chosen each test condition.
Study conclusions are as follows: Affective preferences were significantly positive towards the new bedding. For the new bedding system, Kansei word "quality" was positively correlated to "nice to touch". For the conventional bedding system, "quality" was positively correlated to "comfort" and "soft". The time analysis showed that significantly less time was needed to make a patient bed with the new bedding system. Results have shown significantly decreased workloads with the new bedding system. One person is able to do the new bedding with fewer tasks. The new bedding required higher compression forces on the lower back compared to conventional bedding. However, all compression forces were below the limits according to the NIOSH guidelines. Frequency and time durations of forward bending are decreased with the new bedding compared to the conventional bedding. Moreover, hand elevation above shoulders is not needed with the new bedding system while it is necessary with the conventional bedding. The discomfort evalutions indicate that the new bedding gave significantly less neck and shoulder discomfort. The participants´ overall preferences were found significantly positive for the new bedding system. Further overall comparisons on the same scale confirmed that the new bedding system is preferred compared to the conventional bedding system. To conclude, the current study showed that the new bedding product was found more functional and aesthetically appealing and satisfying as well ergonomically designed compared with conventional bedding by the nursing personnel.
2008. , 55 p.
Affective Engineering, bed making, spinal compression, forward bending.