A nurse call system has a button near the patient's bedside, which they can push to call for help. When the button is pressed, nursing staff is alerted at the nurse's station visually or with audio after which staff can visit to the patient for support.
A nurse call system comprises of a button or cord along patient bedside in hospitals and nursing homes, It allows patients to alert a nurse or other health care staff member remotely of their need for help. When the button is pressed, a signal alerts staff at the nurse's station, and a nurse or any other assistant responds to such a call. Some systems also allow the patient to speak directly to the staffer; others simply beep or buzz at the station, requiring a staffer to actually visit the patient's room to handle the patient's needs.
The call button provides the following benefits to patients:
The most basic system has a single button near the patient's bedside, which they can push to call for assistance. When the button is pressed, nursing staff is alerted by a light and/or an audible sound at the nurse's station. This can only be turned off from the patient's bedside, thereby compelling staff to respond to the patient.
Like hardwired systems, wireless nurse call system have the ability to alert nursing staff using sounds or lights at the nurse's station. In addition, many wireless call systems can display messages on a terminal. An advantage to wireless call buttons is that installing them requires less wiring, reducing their cost. However, dome lights in hallways still usually require wiring for power. Disadvantages of wireless systems include the heightened risk of signal interference with other systems in the facility, the necessity of installing batteries in each patient station and changing them as needed.
In some facilities, often in hospitals, a more advanced system is used, which allows staff from the nurse station to speak directly to the patients. This has the advantage of allowing nursing staff to immediately assess the severity of the situation and determine if immediate assistance is needed or if the patient can wait.
With the intercom system, the alert can be turned off from the nurse's station, allowing staff to avoid entering the patient's room if it is determined that the patient's need can be met without doing so.