As a healthcare provider, you know the importance of delivering a positive patient experience. That experience begins in the waiting room, where patients often have little more than outdated magazines to hold their attention. Digital signage content integrations give you an opportunity to not only improve the waiting experience for patients but also improve organizational efficiency.

Here are five content integrations that can help you make the most of your healthcare digital signage.

Queue Management

Traditional queue management solutions use digital displays to inform patients of their current positions in the line to see the doctor. Unfortunately, this service does little more than tell the patient to take a number and wait. While wait times are unavoidable and often lengthy, there are ways to improve the experience for both your patients and staff.

Digital signage queue management content integrations can help reduce the frustration of waiting by providing entertaining distractions and useful information to patients. In fact, digital signage helps reduce perceived waiting times by 35 percent.

Enhanced queue management is beneficial to healthcare providers as well. Research shows that hospitals waste $12 billion annually due to inefficient communication practices, but save $8.1 billion annually by switching to digital. That’s because digital signage not only reduces perceived wait times but also improves organizational efficiency.

Content integrations can be used to communicate important information to patients so that they arrive prepared with necessary healthcare documentation, rather than waiting in queues for hours only to find out they have to start the process again. It can also be used to inform patients of online options that may help them avoid the queuing process entirely.

Digital signage is also perfect for bridging the language gap in an increasingly multilingual society. Often, healthcare providers are forced to post multiple signs or cram multiple translations into one display to better communicate with patients. With digital signage, however, these messages can be displayed in a more aesthetically pleasing and easy-to-understand format by simply cycling through different screens.

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Transportation Apps

Digital signage content integrations can also be helpful in communicating useful transit information to patients, especially those who don’t have access to a reliable source of transportation. Displaying Uber and Lyft information via digital signage allows patients to see local wait times, estimated arrivals, vehicle service options and fares and arrange for transportation directly.

Uber and Lyft are not only a convenience for the patient but also provides value to healthcare providers who lose $150 billion annually on missed appointments, with no-show rates of up to 30 percent. No shows not only hurt the provider but also cause costly interruptions to patient care, both regarding financing and personal health. Uber and Lyft also guarantee patients have a safe ride home after a procedure.

Displaying information for public transportation, like bus and subway schedules, may be more effective in city hospitals. Viewing bus and train schedules can further reduce patients anxiety.

For some healthcare providers, a low level of readmissions can also earn a higher insurance reimbursement rate, providing additional incentive for helping patients make their follow-up appointments.

YouTube and Vimeo

Video content not only provides a welcome distraction to waiting patients but is also a more efficient means of communicating helpful information. In fact, viewers retain 95 percent of a message when it is presented in video format, compared to just 10 percent of a message presented in text format.

YouTube and Vimeo offer a readily available, free selection of relevant video content, such as medical explainer videos and children’s television programming, that be curated into entertaining, informative playlists for your target audience. You can also create your own personalized video content, offering virtual tours of the healthcare facility, introducing key staff members, answering FAQs, explaining procedures and offering general health advice.

This type of content not only distracts from wait times but also helps reduce anxiety and boost patient attitudes.

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Photo Playlists

Visual content is eye-catching and can be used in a variety of ways. For example, photo playlists can be used to broadcast calming images that show patients going through the medical process, including pre-op meetings with doctors and post-op recovery. Seeing a fellow patient happily and successfully advance through a procedure can help reduce the anxiety that can arise during long wait times.

Content integrations using photo playlists are also a great way to provide information at a glance in a quick and easily digestible format. Infographics can be used to highlight important statistical data. Interesting, relevant images can be used to enhance a pre-appointment preparation checklist. Photo playlists can also replace paper-based advertisements and announcements.

Social Media and User-Generated Content

According to Nielsen, consumers trust recommendations from friends and family more than any other type of advertising. This makes social media conversation and user-generated content an invaluable (and free) source of marketing content. Patient testimonials, tweets about positive experiences with your staff, glowing reviews of your healthcare facility — all of these items increase brand awareness at no additional cost to your marketing budget and can be easily integrated into your digital signage strategy. It also makes featured patients feel appreciated and that they are getting attention from their provider.

Why Use Content Integrations for Digital Signage?

Digital signage can do more than replace static signage. With the right content integrations, you can engage, distract and inform your patients. This not only reduces perceived wait times but also helps you speed up the queue by improving organizational efficiency. Thus, digital signage, used to its full potential, can enhance the day-to-day healthcare experience for both your staff and your patients.