In the healthcare industry, there are different audiences that you have to communicate with for different purposes. Some examples include:
- Patients waiting in the lobby for their turn
- Upcoming classes for outpatients
- Policy reminders to staff
As a result, the goal here is to convey relevant information to the relevant audience in a timely manner, in order for your healthcare facility to function smoothly.
Hospitals and clinics are often a stressful place for people to be in, and when the facility is big in size, we are often overwhelmed. Anxiety will only make health conditions worse. Hence digital signage should help visitors reduce their anxiety by providing useful information and helping them make informed decisions.
LED signs that are used in healthcare:
- Are modern and dynamic
- Facilitates real time updates
- Drastically reduces printing costs
- Integrates with safety alert systems
- Allows displaying customized content
Dynamic digital signage allows the following types of content to be screened:
- Live television
- News and traffic updates
- Still messaging
- Informational videos catered to target audiences
- Overview of your healthcare facility and doctor profiles
How your healthcare facility can benefit from digital signage?
Patients and Visitors
Providing useful information such as health tips, current news, wayfinding, upcoming events and so on by way of indoor LED signs can help:
- connect with patients and visitors, and
- make them feel comfortable
- improve visitor experience
- make them feel informed and in control
In your healthcare facility, you can also invest in interactive digital kiosks where patients can do self check-in, enter their insurance information and also arrange future appointments by themselves.
For Your Facility
With digital signage being able to strongly increase connections, you can build a community with your visitors and patients. On a broader perspective, hospitals are quite impersonal. But creatively designed messages can work wonders in reducing stress and giving people what they want.
For corporate use, indoor LED signs are extremely valuable in:
- improving workflows and efficiencies because people are better informed
- establishing centralized communication
- providing up-to-date and accurate information to viewers
Communicating through emails may be slow as a person will only check emails when he/she finds the time. Digital signage reaches employees immediately, in whatever room they are at that point of time. In a healthcare facility, the following information can be displayed on LED screens:
- Health tips
- Insurance updates
- Billing policies
- Upcoming events
- Cafeteria menus
- Available products and services
- Queuing information
- Educational opportunities
When your digital signage takes up the responsibility of conveying all this information, your staff is freed up for other duties such as helping visitors.
However, it is important to note that a hospital is an information-heavy environment and in places like these, simply putting up LED displays everywhere will not suffice. A clear cut strategy is needed to be successful.
Plan a clever strategy
A system for implementing and managing the flow of digital signage has to be carefully planned out. Your objectives have to be laid out in a clear, consistent and logical manner. With these objectives, you can create a strategy and a roadmap to deploy and execute the digital signage system including the necessary hardware and software.
The kind of technology you invest in depends on its purpose. Some hospitals have gone completely paperless, handing each staff a hand held device, while other hospitals are partially digital with wireless keyboards and internet facilities in patient rooms.
When putting in place your objectives and strategies, it is important to consider the needs of hospital staff, patients and visitors.
Although you might delegate the implementation of the technological system of your healthcare facility to a highly skilled IT department, they are not the ones using it on a daily basis. You need to get everyone involved: marketing, HR, admin, purchasing officers, department heads, website staff and also your security team. All these people will have some content or the other to contribute to the signage system. Hence it is important to have everyone on the same page as it makes them feel empowered in being a part of the new system. These people also should be consulted regularly when updating your signage to inquire if they have anything to contribute in terms of content.
Outline the goals that you want to achieve in detail and this will help produce a clear workflow in terms of implementing and using the system. With clearly outlined goals you can also easily measure return on investment after the system is deployed.
- How will people use your signage system?
- How can it be operated inside your healthcare facility
- What content should be displayed?
- Who will create and approve the content?
- What content criteria should be met?
- Who will maintain the hardware?
- Who will manage the software?
A detailed project plan needs to be created with essential action items, timeframes and resources. In addition to the above, you should also look at things like:
- Placement of LED displays: high traffic areas will have more views, placing them too high affects visibility, etc
- What kind of content should be displayed?
- Static, dynamic, videos, news feeds, etc
- Do you want to use a color scheme that corresponds with your interior decoration?
- Is audio required or is only video sufficient? Audio can be used in areas where sound will not be disturbing.
- Issues related to technology:
- Network security policies
- Sources of revenue:
- Advertising for pharmacy, gift shop and cafeteria
- Advertising the business of frequently visiting patients
- Services that are outsourced:
- Creation of content
- Paid subscription
- Communication plan in emergency situations
- Expanding the system in future
From the time you decide to implement an LED signage system in your healthcare facility, get in touch with a qualified IT professional as an assistant for the campaign. Get them to do a check of the power, connectivity and IT security within the facility, particularly in locations where LED displays will be placed. You don’t want to invest in an LED screen and hang it on a wall and then find out that there’s no way to connect it to a power outlet!
You need to be well aware of what content goes on your screens. After determining the overall goals, you will have an idea of what content to come up with. The best thing is to go into great detail:
- How many people should be on the content team?
- What is the procedure and guidelines for creating content?
- Differentiate between content that needs to be regularly updated
- What file types are feasible with your system? (RSS feeds, MP4, Flash, etc)
- Do you want to make your screens interactive for wayfinding purposes?
- Do you want to integrate queuing into the system?
- How will you plan your emergency alert notifications?
In addition to the initial costs, you need to budget for the near future (18-24 months minimum).
- Software and hardware upgrades
- Additional displays, player and bandwidths as the system expands
- Regular training for those using the signage system
- Do you want to hire designers to give your signage a fresh look periodically?
- Technical support costs
Don’t go all out and plan a massive campaign at the beginning. It is better to start simple and thorough while gradually expanding and linking the entire system.