Supporting COVID-19 patients and their caregivers in North Holland
Dijklander Ziekenhuis Hoorn Hospital, located in West-Friesland, is near the Microsoft North Holland datacenter. While the hospital’s immediate community was not particularly hard hit by COVID-19, high infection rates in nearby areas meant the Dijklander Hospital admitted patients when other facilities were overwhelmed, even creating a temporary intake center outside the building.
Improving COVID-19 treatment and recovery
Microsoft made a donation to the Dijklander Hospital, which was initially used to purchase a bed bicycle. The bed bike has a motor and can be placed horizontally over a patient’s bed from the foot end. This allows coronavirus patients who have been admitted for lengthy stays to cycle, either actively or passively. “With the gift from Microsoft, the [bike] supplier could be called the same day and the bed bike was delivered shortly afterwards,” said Ingrid Koopman of the Friends of Dijklander Hospital Foundation, an organization that is committed to creating a pleasant hospital experience for patients, visitors, and employees alike. Thanks to the bed bike, patients can remain active and become mobile earlier in the disease recovery process.
Physiotherapist Martijn Buijs explains, “In the first period, cycling can take place passively. If the patient is not aware, the patient’s legs can be moved by the motor in the bicycle. For this, it is necessary that the patient is stable and lies on his back.” As a patient’s condition improves and their recovery progresses, they can switch to actively pedaling the bike. “He can then build muscle strength and fitness by adding resistance,” says Buijs. “With just a few minutes of cycling a day, patients can improve their condition, making them recover faster.”
Ensuring communication between patients and family
With the remaining funds from Microsoft, Dijklander Hospital purchased a bicycle labyrinth and tablets for patients to use during their stays. The bicycle labyrinth offers interactive virtual bike tours, intended for people for whom an outdoor bike ride is no longer an option. Because of COVID-19, hospital visitors were prohibited and contact with the outside world limited. Tablets made it possible for patients to maintain contact with family and friends at home. “This gift from Microsoft was highly appreciated by the Friends of Dijklander Hospital Foundation,” says Jaap Boukens, the foundation’s treasurer.