Digital Displays and Signage in Healthcare
Imagine the last time you went to a hospital or clinic. You were either going for your own medical need or to support someone you care about. Either way, the process is fraught with stress and confusion. Adding to that difficulty checking in, finding where you need to be, and then waiting and you have a recipe for unhappy people.
Digital displays can help with the entire process of getting people where they need to be, checking in, and making the wait time easier.
Healthcare Digital Trends
One of the biggest trends showing up in hospitals is indoor, digital wayfinding. Think GPS navigation for inside the hospital. Connexient has created a system called MediNav that uses low-energy Bluetooth beacons to locate users inside the building. The software can then display information on a mobile app, through a kiosk, or on digital signage. Some of the best applications use all three to help people get where they need to be with a minimum of stress and confusion.
Following the trends in other sectors, healthcare providers are moving toward electronic check-in systems, which can provide the relevant information to the patient in their language without the need for then transcribing the information into the computer system at a later time. Electronic check-in, facilitated through digital kiosks, makes it easier for patients, eliminates waste for healthcare providers, and frees up medical professionals to serve patients instead of paperwork.
Many hospitals are now using digital signage and displays to communicate important information to patients. For example, when a patient is waiting for a doctor to arrive, a display in the room can be explaining basic safety and privacy topics. So a patient sitting in a hospital room can learn about how the bed works, how to call for assistance, and their privacy rights. Then the medical professionals can focus the needs of the patient instead of going over general information.
Digital signage also allows for the quick, mistake-free communication of vital information between the medical professionals. Hospital rooms with digital displays can show the patient’s information, the most recent medication, the attending physician, and any other relevant data. And since the information is all digital, there is less chance of error which increases efficiency and safety.
Waiting is so much a part of the healthcare experience. Waiting to be called back, waiting for the physician’s assistant, waiting for the physician, and then usually some more waiting after that. Instead of giving patients outdated magazines, digital displays can offer information, entertainment, and general amelioration of the stress that everyone experiences while waiting for healthcare.
Most innovative healthcare organizations in America
For many hospital goers, the chapel is a refuge of last resort. It’s not a familiar religious or spiritual destination for anyone, but hospitals have chapels for those who have a desperate need for tranquility and peace in the midst of incredibly stressful times. The Florida Hospital has used digital displays in their Wesley Chapel to reach past the nearly overwhelming emotions that people experience and the offer some respite through peaceful, visual images presented in an artful manner.
At the Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital, they have deployed the MediNav turn-by-turn navigation system allowing visitors to use an iPhone or Android app to find exactly where they need to be in the hospital. The navigation system uses Bluetooth beacons to locate the users’ device to within a couple of meters.
Helping hospitals and clinics to communicate effectively, Pocket Anatomy offers interactive 3D models of the human body. Doctors can use iOS or Macintosh apps to show patients exactly what they’re talking about, which increases the patient understanding of procedures and the overall buy-in necessary for the healthcare plan to be effective.
As with all industries, healthcare will benefit from thoughtful, innovative applications of technology that emphasize the connections between people.