Valley Children’s Nurse Receives National Recognition for Innovative Device

02.19.2021
Valley Children’s Nurse Receives National Recognition for Innovative Device

(Madera, Calif.) – If you’ve ever been hospitalized, or stayed with a loved one while they’ve been hospitalized, you are probably familiar with how disruptive the hospital environment can be to getting a good night’s sleep. Although sleep is an essential part of health and healing, patients regularly report poor sleep quality during hospitalization. After all, the sights and sounds of the hospital aren’t limited to a 9-to-5 shift; care teams need to come in at all hours of the night to check vitals, inspect IV lines, administer medications and perform other essential tasks.

Frontline healthcare staff are intimately familiar with these challenges for patients, but also for themselves as they work to provide safe clinical care. This inspired Valley Children’s NICU nurse Jennifferre Mancillas to invent a device to propel patient care light years ahead.

Mancillas partnered with University of Pennsylvania nursing student Anthony Scarpone-Lambert to found Lumify Care. The startup is now preparing to supply healthcare organizations with their new invention, the uNight Light.

The uNight Light is a wearable, lightweight and hands-free LED light designed for the clinical environment, with the goal of decreasing patient sleep disturbances. The innovation was piloted at several hospitals across the country, including Valley Children’s. When surveying nursing staff at these institutions on their experience navigating the challenges of working while minimizing patient sleep disturbances, Mancillas and Scarpone-Lambert found that 87% of nurses struggled to see while providing patient care at night.

“When nurses can’t see, we put our patient and ourselves at risk. This leads us to turn on intrusive overhead room lights that disrupt our patients,” Mancillas said.
 

Photo of the uNight Light being used in a dark hospital roomPhoto of the uNight Light being used in the hospital
Photo credit: Lumify Care


Nurses and other frontline healthcare workers have developed creative ways of seeing better in a darkened patient room while not turning on the big overhead lights – like using phone flashlights, pen lights and patient bathroom lights – these methods can be non-optimal and sometimes even present an infection risk.

“As a nurse, I think it’s really special because we are great innovators. We do DIY solutions nearly every day to make things more efficient or improve patient care, and the quality of patient care,” Mancillas said. “As nurses, we understand the problems we are solving first-hand.”

A Guiding Light for Night Shift Staff

One thing that makes the uNight Light unique is that it’s developed for the clinical environment. Other wearable light options on the market are made to help the wearer be seen, not necessarily to help them see. Wearable light products for cyclists and runners, for example, feature bright, pulsating light that is not conducive to encouraging sleep in a darkened hospital room.

The uNight Light, in contrast, uses red, blue, and white light options, each serving a unique purpose to optimize a nurse’s ability to see, while decreasing patient disturbances and maximizing safe patient care. The red light preserves night vision while being undisruptive to the patient. Lumify Care touts the white light as “powerful enough to see, dim enough to not be seen.” This allows nurses to conduct essential clinical assessments while not disturbing the patient. The blue light regulates the circadian rhythm, helping keep night shift staff awake and alert.

uNight Light Generates National Interest

More than 400 nurses from 12 healthcare networks – including Valley Children’s – have used uNight Light. About 95% of nurses surveyed stated that the device helped them see better while providing patient care.

The device’s impact is felt far beyond Valley Children’s walls, however; uNight Light has won multiple innovation awards and has received national media coverage, including a feature article in the New York Times. The company has launched preorders for the device and direct sales to hospitals. In addition, founders Mancillas and Scarpone-Lambert have built a structure to deliver uNight Lights to underserved healthcare facilities around the world. According to the company, for every bulk of uNight Lights sold, Lumify supplies an under-resourced healthcare facility with uNight Lights.

 

To learn more about Lumify Care, visit www.lumifycare.com.



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