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J Hosp Med. 2012 Jul-Aug;7(6):508-12. doi: 10.1002/jhm.1934. Epub 2012 Mar 9.

Sleep rounds: a multidisciplinary approach to optimize sleep quality and satisfaction in hospitalized patients.

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  • 1Department of Neurology, Johns Hopkins School of Medicine, Baltimore, Maryland, USA.



Poor sleep has adverse affects on heath, yet few studies have addressed the goal of improving sleep among hospitalized patients. We evaluated the effectiveness of a sleep-promoting intervention on the quality and quantity of sleep among inpatients.


This study was conducted on a neurological ward in a large, tertiary care hospital. Sleep quality, quantity, and disruptors were assessed using questionnaires completed by patients during their hospital stay and Press Ganey surveys completed retrospectively. Room noise was also measured using noise meters. Data from each of 4 chronological phases of the study (baseline, basic intervention, "washout," and deluxe intervention) were analyzed. In the intervention phases, nurses conducted "Sleep Rounds" at bedtime, during which sleep-promoting practices were implemented, including lights out, television off, temperature adjustment, and a final restroom usage.


Patients reported 5 (interquartile range [IQR] 3) hours of sleep per night, awoke 3 (IQR 3) times nightly, and reported a median sleep latency of 11 to 15 minutes. Pain, staff interruptions, and roommates were the most significant barriers to good sleep. Noise levels were adequately low (35-40 dB) at night but were not positively impacted by our sleep-promoting interventions. Patients perceived noise on the unit to be worse during phases of the study in which there was no intervention.


Patient perception of sleep experience improved during the phases in which Sleep Rounds were implemented, despite the fact that there was no measurable improvement in sleep or sleep-disrupting factors.

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