Warm Hospitality

I’ve noticed that children’s hospitals often have a lot of thought and resources put into creating an uplifting ambient environment. I don’t know what the norm is when it comes to this stuff, but non-linear architecture and green spaces are often features, with one place I can think of even going so far as to install a permanent meerkat enclosure.

Evidently, it’s been scientifically established that stuff like this is important for kids in hospitals; how else would they be able to justify the expenditure? That being the case, I have to wonder why it’s not more of a thing for adults. I assume it’s partly a financial situation – presumably, it’s not as easy to raise money for sick adults as it is for sick kids. Plus, it’s probably thought that adults are better equipped to cope with unfamiliar and sometimes unpleasant environments. That’s all pretty fair.

I’m only thinking about all this because I was at a hospital this morning to drop off a delivery, and I overheard a conversation about the relative benefits of home-based versus hospital-based hyperbaric medicine. Melbourne, it seems, has some hospital clinics that provide it, but it’s an expensive avenue of treatment due to its ongoing nature and the specialised apparatus required.

However, as or recently, it’s possibly to purchase a version of the device for home use. Known as portable hyperbaric chambers, these are available to the public for purchase, which works out much cheaper than going for regular clinic sessions. The person who was talking about it was quite excited, but not so much about the financial savings. It was more about being able to make the treatment a more pleasant and nurturing experience for her elderly mother (who, by the sounds of it, is suffering some kind of diabetic foot ulcer).


Anyway, I don’t have any clear point to make here. This is just a confused mish-mash of musings and eavesdropping, and visions of someone having a meerkat enclosure in their house.