Home Marketplace Giving patients back some dignity

Giving patients back some dignity

September 2008

Published in the September 2008 issue of Today’s Hospitalist

HOSPITAL GOWNS MAY BE the butt of many jokes, but for hospitalized patients who are healthy enough to get out of bed, the idea of walking around with their backside exposed is no laughing matter.

That’s why one company has created a new line of hospital gowns designed to not only make hospital patients more comfortable, but give them a little dignity.

RxPJs resemble oversized robes with a zipper up the front and on both shoulders, so even patients with multiple tubes can get in and out of the gowns relatively easily. Gowns for adults cost about $70. Other models, including gowns for children, sell for less.

Company founder Paula Milgrom created RxPJs after feeling humiliated while trying to stretch her legs during a hospital stay a few years back. She worked with a seamstress to modify housecoats, pajamas and nightgowns for hospital use. A focus group of nurses helped tweak the final design.

“The arm holes are loose,” Ms. Milgrom says, “so if you have IVs and fluids, you can walk around and still be covered.”

While most of her customers have been individuals, two hospitals have purchased the robes. One gives the robes to all patients, while the other plans to make the robes available to patients who pay for high-end “hospitality suites.”

Ms. Milgrom thinks that hospitals’ obsession with patient satisfaction scores could give her business a boost. “If hospitals are worried about how long patients have to wait for an X-ray,” she says, “it makes sense to make those people as comfortable as possible while they’re waiting.”
More information about RxPJs is online.