New research has, for the first time, shown the true impact of Hospital Radio on a patient’s well-being.
It shows stations offer a unique service, giving patients a sense of belonging and helping their psychosocial health, from relieving boredom and loneliness to being a calming influence at what can be – for many – a difficult time, in a strange environment.
Patients, staff and volunteers from over a hundred hospitals, across the UK, were questioned and all suggested the service was a useful aid in helping a patient’s over-all recovery.
NHS staff told the researchers that Hospital Radio can help ease anxiety during treatment, helping people relax and giving them something else to focus on, rather than the treatment itself.
Grant McNaughton, chairman of the Hospital Broadcasting Association (HBA) said: “A lot has changed in the 90 years since the first Hospital Radio station started broadcasting, and patients now have access to a whole range of different entertainment systems – including their own devices which can now store and play their own choice of films, TV programmes and music.
Despite that, Hospital Radio continues to play a strong role and, as the research proves, can make a real difference for that patient feeling isolated and away from their loved ones for a period of time.”
The report was commissioned amid fears some hospital radio stations were being closed down, as part of cost-saving measures within the NHS. Two years ago one station in Guildford was forced off air when the Hospital Trust revealed it wanted to make space available for a Marks and Spencer Store within the hospital.