Nightingale Phone Speeds Communication Between Nurse and Patient

The Nightingale phone and Vocera device.

Huntington Hospital has been piloting a new phone for patients so they can more quickly get in touch with their nurse in various units of the hospital.

Dubbed the Nightingale phone, it includes a red nurse button on the back that when pressed directly calls the Vocera device the patient’s nurse is wearing so that patient can talk to his/her nurse immediately without the typical wait time. The Nightingale phone was the brainchild of Marie Roggenkamp, RN, nurse manager on Huntington Hospital’s cancer unit, and Stephen Smith, manager of site communications at the hospital, who wanted patients to get their needs met, especially for pain medication, as soon as possible.

 “The Nightingale phone is a faster way for nursing staff and patients to communicate,” Mr. Smith explained. “The call bell system requires a nurse to be close enough to hear the call bell or see the light go off outside the patient’s room and may take longer to get a response. This allows the patient to connect with the nurse no matter where they are on the unit.”

During each nursing shift, the patients’ phones are programmed to be connected to the specific nurse’s Vocera device. If that nurse is unavailable at the time of the patient’s call, it will be routed to the nursing station so someone else can attend to the patient’s need.

“We have had a tremendously positive response to these phones since they debuted on the cancer unit,” Ms. Roggenkamp said. “It’s also been helpful for nurses to stay in contact with their patients when they are on a different part of the unit.”

As a result of the great success of the Nightingale phones at Huntington Hospital, other Northwell Health hospitals are beginning to pilot the use of these phones.

For more information about Huntington Hospital, call 631-351-2000.


Alexandra Zendrian
[email protected]