International Journal of
Nursing and Midwifery

  • Abbreviation: Int. J. Nurs. Midwifery
  • Language: English
  • ISSN: 2141-2456
  • DOI: 10.5897/IJNM
  • Start Year: 2009
  • Published Articles: 200

Full Length Research Paper

An appraisal of non-staff visitor involvement in bedside patient care in a specific hospital in the Midwest United States

Huey-Ming Tzeng
  • Huey-Ming Tzeng
  • Department of Nursing, School of Health Professions and Studies, University of Michigan-Flint, Flint, Michigan, USA.
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Chang-Yi Yin
  • Chang-Yi Yin
  • Department of History, Chinese Culture University, Taipei, Taiwan.
  • Google Scholar

  •  Accepted: 13 June 2011
  •  Published: 31 August 2011



LA descriptive study was conducted to understand the prevalence of non-staff visitor presence in acute inpatient care settings. This paper also summarizes recent studies on the issues related to promoting efficient and effective care transitions and the recent movement of embracing family and non-family visitor involvement in patient care. This descriptive study was conducted in three inpatient care units of a Michigan hospital in April, 2007. A trained research assistant counted the number of visitors for each patient on two weekdays and two weekend days at three predetermined time points for each day. Descriptive analyses were used to answer the question of: What is the prevalence of visitor presence in a specific hospital in the Midwest United States? About 36% of the patients had at least one visitor  present during their hospital stays. Among adult medical patients, about 22% of them had at least one visitor present. Among pediatric patients, about 59% of them had at least one visitor present during the hospital stays. A culture of non-staff visitor involvement in bedside care exists in the US hospital environment when a child is hospitalized, but this is not necessarily the case when an adult is hospitalized.

Key words: Hospitals, safety, patients, family, professional-family relations, nursing care.