A recharge during the nightshift?

Recharging during the night is possible at the Reinier de Graaf hospital in Delft, the Netherlands. By providing such a feature, the hospital is fully in compliance with the advice handed down by government agencies TNO* and the RIVM* to facilitate a powernap. The Reinier de Graaf employs powernaps as an intervention for nighshifts.
(TNO = Dutch government institute for (technological) research and innovation. RIVM =National Institute for health and environment) 


Night work TNO & RIVM

Despite the proven health risks of night work, little research has been done in to the experiences of night workers themselves. How do they find the impact upon their own health? The RIVM, together with TNO, funded by the GAK-Institute researched this. In the brochure ‘Iinsight in to the impact of night work and possible solutions’ the two institutes present their most important findings.

In the brochure both government bodies state that fatigue at work can pose a grave danger, it increases the risk of error and compromises safety. Structural attention for prevention is a must according to the institutes, they also find that a short recovery moment or powerhap can help to reduce tiredness.

Healthy and safe work in the night

In a lot of Dutch hospitals, people are convinced it is very important that night work should be safe and healthy. Facilitating recovery at work, presents nurses the opportunity to have a short recovery when fatigued or low on energy.


Reinier de Graaf uses VITA Sentation powernapchairs

Recently,  the Reinier de Graaf hospital purchased three VITA Sentation powernapchairs for different departments. Besides their powernap-functionality, the chairs boast severeal other forms of recovery. This makes the application possibilies quite wide. For example, they can be used in recovery in high stress environment, for deep relaxation but can also be used for re-integration of employees.


“I’m so proud that we, as a unit, were able to realise this”

Charlotte Kwaak (Advisor Work and Health)

Enthusiasm amongst nurses

Nurses have responded to the use of powernap-chairs with great enthusiasm. User-feedback is very positive.

“The muscle tension in my lower-back is gone! This had been bothering me for weeks.”
 “To be able to instantly recover at work when using the chair is great. My legs are really relaxed.”

Source: Linkedin Post Reinier de Graaf Ziekhuis and Facebookpage RDG ziekenhuis (both in Dutch)

Findings TNO and RIVM

In the findings and conclusions presented by both TNO and RIVM night workers emphasise their positive experiences with a moment of recovery during their night shift. They feel recharged for the remainder of their shift ánd drive home more alert. One condition, the concept of powernapping has to be accepted by both management and peers alike. Furthermore, a suitable room has to be available for powernapping.

Advice: create sufficient support

One of the recommendations TNO gives is for management to “lead by example” and for organisations to create sufficient base. It is reported dat departments where interventive measures are succesful,  are departments managed by enthousiastic and supportive people.

It is vital that managers themselves also use the facilities and/ or actively promote the benefits of powernapping. The anxiety to powernap at work can be overcome by having a manager who has bought in to the concept. This strongly attributes to the succes of any intervention measure that is offered to employees.

Read more about the study done by TNO and RIVM (link in Dutch)

Enquire about the possibilities

Would you like to know more about the importance of recovery? Or would you like to experience for yourself what a short recoverymoment can do for you, just like the employees of the Reinier de Graaf hospital have?

Please feel free to get in touch with us, we are more than happy to share our experiences and our knowledge. By the way, our client group consist of many different branches with shiftwork, not just exclusively healthcare.


Reach out to us with all your questions, through e-mail or call us at  +31 (0)344 571444.