Bed Making in Hospital Procedure, Definition, Principles, Types

Bed Making in Hospital Procedure, Definition, Principles, Types – The art of bed making is not merely a chore but a crucial procedure. Bed-making is the process through which nurses prepare and arrange various types of beds to ensure the utmost comfort of patients in healthcare facilities, be it a hospital or any other medical institution. This task is no simple feat; it is a meticulous process that varies according to the patient’s condition, the purpose of the bed, and the specific medical procedure. Let’s delve deeper into the world of bed making, exploring its definition, principles, and the various types that cater to diverse patient needs.

Definition Of Bed Making

At its core, bed-making is a precise technique employed to create an environment where patients can rest and recover comfortably. Different types of beds are prepared with a singular goal in mind: to cater to the specific needs of the patient based on their condition and the procedures that they may undergo.

Purposes Of Bed Making in Hospital

Bed making in Hospital serves several essential purposes:

  1. Ensuring Patient Comfort: The primary objective is to provide a safe and comfortable bed for the patient, facilitating their recovery journey.
  2. Organizing the Ward: Bed-making helps in maintaining the organization within the healthcare facility, ensuring that patients are allocated to the appropriate beds.
  3. Preparedness for Emergencies: An efficiently made bed can be crucial in critical or emergency situations, where every second counts.
  4. Preventing Bedsores: By employing correct bed-making techniques, nurses can significantly reduce the risk of bedsores, a common concern for immobile patients.
  5. Promoting Neatness and Cleanliness: Cleanliness is paramount in a medical setting, and well-made beds contribute to maintaining a hygienic environment.
  6. Patient Education: It is also an opportunity for nurses to educate the patient’s relatives on how to care for the sick at home, as they may have to deal with similar situations.

Principles Of Bed Making In Nursing

Effective bedmaking involves adhering to several principles to ensure the patient’s well-being and the maintenance of a sterile environment.

  1. Preventing the Spread of Microorganisms: Microorganisms can be found everywhere, but their spread can be controlled through various actions, such as frequent handwashing by the nurse, changing bed linen and clothes regularly to maintain cleanliness, and avoiding dropping removed bed linen on the floor.
  2. Creating a Comfortable Bed: A comfortable bed can significantly impact a patient’s recovery. Steps taken to achieve this include ensuring the bed is smooth and free of wrinkles to avoid pressure on bony prominences and the development of bedsores.
  3. Maintaining Good Body Mechanics: Proper body mechanics are crucial to preventing strain and fatigue among nurses. This involves keeping the center of gravity over a wide base, flexing knees and hips when tucking sheets, and facing the direction of work to avoid unnecessary twisting and overreaching.
  4. Planned and Organized Work: Efficiency is key. Nurses should organize their work, collect and arrange all necessary items before starting the bed-making procedure, and follow a systematic approach to minimize energy expenditure and save time and equipment.

Importance of Proper Bed-Making

Proper bed-making is essential for several reasons:

  • Preventing Pressure Ulcers: Well-made beds help distribute the patient’s weight evenly, reducing the risk of pressure ulcers.
  • Reducing the Risk of Infection: Proper infection control during bedmaking can prevent the spread of infections within the hospital.
  • Enhancing the Patient’s Experience: A well-made bed contributes to a more comfortable and pleasant stay for the patient.

General Instructions For Bed Making In Hospitals

To maintain a standard of excellence in bed making within hospitals, several general instructions are followed:

  • Proper Hand Hygiene: Nurses must wash their hands thoroughly before and after the bed-making procedure to prevent cross-infections.
  • Patient Privacy: It is imperative to avoid unnecessary exposure of the patient.
  • Separating Clean and Soiled Linen: Clean and soiled linen should be kept separate at all times.
  • Avoiding Direct Contact with Woollen Blankets: Woollen blankets should not be placed directly on the patient’s body without a bath blanket in between.
  • Gentle Linen Handling: Linen should be handled with care to prevent the transfer of dust and microorganisms.
  • Maintaining Safe Distances: Nurses should maintain a reasonable distance from the patient to prevent the risk of infection.

The Step-by-Step Bed Making in Hospital Procedure

Now that we understand the importance of bed making in hospital setting, let’s walk through the procedure.

Step 1: Gather Your Supplies

Before you begin, gather all the necessary supplies, which typically include fresh linens, a mattress pad, a bedspread, pillowcases, and any additional items such as waterproof covers if needed.

Step 2: Prepare the Bed

Start by ensuring the bed is at a comfortable working height. Lower the side rails if applicable, and wash your hands thoroughly to maintain asepsis.

Step 3: Remove Old Linens

Remove the old linens carefully to avoid any contamination. Dispose of them appropriately and place them in a laundry bag.

Step 4: Prepare the Mattress

If the patient requires a waterproof cover, ensure it’s in place. Add a clean mattress pad and fitted sheet.

Step 5: Create Hospital Corners

Hospital corners are the hallmark of a well-made bed. Tuck in the bottom sheet at the foot of the bed, and then lift the edge of the mattress to create a triangular fold. Tuck the excess fabric beneath the mattress, ensuring it is tight and wrinkle-free.

Step 6: Add the Top Sheet

Place the top sheet, ensuring it aligns evenly with the head of the mattress. Tuck it in at the foot end and along the sides.

Step 7: Arrange the Blanket or Bedspread

Now, add a blanket or bedspread, tucking it in at the foot and along the sides. Ensure it’s straight and wrinkle-free.

Step 8: Add Pillowcases

Finally, add clean pillowcases to any pillows required for the patient’s comfort.

Step 9: Final Adjustments

Step back and inspect the bed for any wrinkles, ensuring it’s perfectly made. Adjust any corners or edges as necessary.

By following these steps meticulously, healthcare professionals can create a comfortable and hygienic environment for their patients, promoting a positive healing experience.

Types Of Bed Making in Hospital

Nursing recognizes various types of bed making, each tailored to specific patient needs and situations. These include:

  1. Closed Bed: Prepared for new patients, a closed bed is covered with top linen to protect against dust and dirt while waiting for patient admission.
  2. Open Bed: This is made for clients about to be occupied. It is suitable for new clients or those who are ambulatory.
  3. Admission Bed: Similar to an open bed, the admission bed is made for a client who has had a bath and changed into hospital attire.
  4. Occupied Bed: This is made with the client in the bed, typically for those who cannot get out of bed.
  5. Operation Bed (Post-Anaesthetic Bed): This type of bed is prepared for clients recovering from the effects of anesthesia following surgery.
  6. Cardiac Bed: Designed to help clients assume a sitting position that minimizes strain and discomfort, typically used for those with cardiac conditions.
  7. Fracture Bed: Designed to provide firm support for clients with fractures in the trunk or extremities, using a firm mattress on a fracture board.
  8. Amputation Bed (Stump Bed): Used after leg amputations to relieve weight from the operation site and facilitate wound care.
  9. Blanket Bed: Employed for clients with renal disease to encourage skin elimination, lift the weight of bedclothes from painful joints, and maintain warmth.

Bed Making for Special Cases

Pediatric Patients

When making beds for pediatric patients, extra care must be taken to create a child-friendly and reassuring environment. The choice of bedding and room decor can significantly impact the child’s comfort.

Elderly Patients

Elderly patients may have unique requirements, such as the need for extra pillows or specialized mattresses. Adjusting the bed to accommodate these needs is essential for their well-being.

Patients with Specific Medical Conditions

Patients with specific medical conditions may require specialized beds, such as those with pressure-relief surfaces. Bed making in such cases should adhere to specific guidelines.


In conclusion, hospital bed-making is not just a routine task but a critical aspect of patient care. It directly affects patient comfort, health, and overall experience in the hospital. Healthcare professionals must prioritize proper bed-making to ensure the best possible care for their patients.

FAQ -Bed Making in Hospital

How often should hospital beds be made?

Hospital beds are typically made daily or as needed. If a patient soils the bed or experiences discomfort, the bed may need to be remade more frequently.

Are there any specific guidelines for bed-making in isolation rooms?

Yes, bed-making in isolation rooms follows strict infection control guidelines to prevent the spread of contagious diseases.

How does hospital bed-making contribute to patient recovery?

A well-made bed provides comfort and minimizes the risk of complications, thus aiding in the patient’s recovery process

Why is bed-making important in healthcare?

Bed making is crucial in healthcare to ensure patient comfort, maintain hygiene, and prevent complications like bedsores. It also contributes to the organization of healthcare facilities.

What are the key principles of bed-making in nursing?

The key principles of bed-making in nursing include preventing the spread of microorganisms, creating a comfortable bed, maintaining good body mechanics, and practicing planned and organized work.

Please note that this article is for informational purposes only and should not substitute professional medical advice.

Name -Parika Parika holds a Master's in Nursing and is pursuing a Ph.D. in Nursing. In addition to her clinical experience, Parika has also served as a nursing instructor for the past 10 years, she enjoys sharing her knowledge and passion for the nursing profession.

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