Flexible and sensitive patient care, commonly referred to as “patient-centered” care, involves understanding and addressing patient preferences and needs in all aspects of a patient's health care journey. Patient-centered care is compassionate care aimed at providing the best possible environment for a patient’s recovery.
Patient-centered care involves the engagement of patients and families in all decision-making. Patient-centered care may include flexibility of visiting hours to accommodate family schedules, facilitating dietary preferences, and being sensitive and responsive to a patient’s spiritual and cultural needs. Studies have shown that patient-centered care not only results in better recovery, but also increases the efficiency of care by reducing diagnostic testing and referrals to other health care professionals.