This week’s post is a departure from the norm. To illustrate the benefits digital wayfinding systems can bring to healthcare facility patients, we are featuring a personal story from one of our LG team members.
If there’s any environment that has a lot to gain from a digital wayfinding solution, it’s a healthcare facility.
I remember the time I had to have a few tests done at a large medical center. I hadn’t been there before, and I underestimated the amount of traffic I’d have to crawl through on the way there. I was already anxious about the tests, and rushing from the parking lot to the main entrance didn’t help matters.
Inside was a large lobby where I looked around for a directory, or someone I could ask for directions. People were coming and going but I didn’t notice any signs or receptionist on duty. I stopped a nurse and she sent me informed and on my way, but wishing I had a better memory.
I had a bit of walking to do, and unfamiliar corridors to navigate. I mixed up a right for a left at one point, and wound up having to ask someone again. This time it was a doctor, who told me that sometimes even she gets lost. I had to backtrack to change direction, and eventually got to where I needed to be, albeit anxious, frustrated and late for my appointment.
So how could digital wayfinding signage have turned this experience around in my favor?
Easily. If the facility had an interactive directory kiosk in the lobby, and digital screens with detailed maps along my route, I would have felt informed and in control, saved time and eliminated the stress of being lost and late. Some certainty would have been very welcome, as would an easy navigation to the cafeteria when my appointment was finished.
In addition to providing directories and clear, concise directions, a system of wayfinding displays can be used to provide awareness of nearby amenities such as hotels, public transit, parking, etc., deliver emergency and severe weather alerts, evacuation procedures, and even summon a doctor to a particular area or room ASAP. All while giving patients and visitors an enhanced sense of well-being, safety and security.
Interactive wayfinding is being used in single buildings, campuses and healthcare systems that include multiple locations. The wayfinding solution can also be combined with a downloadable smartphone app, and beacons can be used to send turn-by-turn walking directions to people’s phones.
Doctors’ and dentists’ offices, clinics, hospitals, long-term care facilities and other healthcare providers are discovering that using digital signage to communicate with patients, visitors and staff has many advantages. We’ll be addressing a number of applications and benefits in the coming weeks, so stay tuned.