Patient Safety

We Are Partners in Safety

Please help us ensure a safe experience for you at our hospital. You, your family and all of the caregivers must partner together to be sure that you have a safe environment.

Safety Precautions:

  • Plan your trips to the bathroom. Try not to wait until you have to rush to make it. Allow enough time for the nursing staff to assist you.
  • Get out of bed slowly. You may feel lightheaded as a result of the change in position, blood pressure or medications. Sit on the side of the bed for a few moments before you begin to walk.
  • Notify the nursing staff if you feel weak, dizzy or unsteady.
  • Walk slowly and carefully when you are out of bed. Do not lean or support yourself on rolling tables or IV Poles.
  • You may need more assistance when walking at the hospital. Do not hesitate to call for help.
  • Wear non-skid socks or shoes while walking. Please do not walk barefoot or in socks.
  • Since the risk of falling is greatest during the first few days of admission, please call the nurse if you feel unfamiliar with your surroundings.
  • Be aware that siderails will be used for your safety when you are in bed or on a stretcher.
  • Keep all furniture in the “low” and “locked” position.
  • Understand that medications may cause dizziness, drowsiness or lack of coordination. If you feel these, please ask for assistance when moving.
  • Some departments (e.g. maternity, pediatrics) have special safety precautions. Please familiarize yourself with these precautions.
  • Always be safety-conscious. If you have suggestions to make our hospital a safer place, let us know by contacting a nursing supervisor or administrative personnel.

Maintain a Safe & Healthful Environment

  • Do not obstruct the walk space to the bathroom or doorway.
  • If a spill occurs and the floor is wet, call the nurse’s station to have it cleaned up.
  • If you are placed on a bedside commode/toilet, you will be checked on and your call button will be within reach.
  • Your nursing staff may suggest that family stay with you (not in critical care units).
  • Protective/support devices may be provided by nursing staff when you are sitting up in a chair or in the bed.
  • Notify your nurse if a family member who has been assisting you with your care must leave.
  • Wash your hands often. Have your visitors wash their hands. Always insist that the staff wash their hands before and after they have contact with you.
  • Know the effects of medications you are taking. They can be changed by certain foods, liquids, alcohol or other drugs. If you do not know about the guidelines for the drugs you are taking, please ask the nurse or clinical pharmacist for more information.
  • Do not use electrical appliances brought from home.
  • Do not smoke in the hospital. We have a smoke-free environment for the health and personal safety of our patients.

Alarms and Drills

Willis-Knighton hospitals have specific procedures for alarms. In the event of a fire drill or a Code Red alert, all patients and visitors should remain in the rooms with the door closed until the “Code Red all clear” is given over the intercom or until an authorized staff member comes to evacuate the room. Patients are not moved during drills.

Restraint Guidelines

If necessary, restraints may have to be temporarily applied. This is always done as a last resort with strict adherence to the following guidelines:

  • The restraint will be removed as soon as the danger to you or others is no longer evident.
  • Restraints are applied as a result of a physician’s order for temporary emergency measures.
  • If you need to be restrained, a nurse will visit you at least every two hours to see that your needs are met.
  • If you feel you are getting restless or agitated, notify your nurse immediately.
  • The use of prescribed medications may help you regain control.

Speak Up!

  • Speak up if you have questions or concerns, and if you don’t understand, ask again.
  • Pay attention to the care you are receiving. Make sure you’re getting the right treatments and medications by the right staff. Don’t assume anything.
  • Educate yourself about your diagnosis, the services the hospital is providing to you and your care plan.
  • Ask a trusted family member or friend to be your advocate.