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Beyond Wizardry: Hospital Digital Signs Are an Expected Standard

By Stewart Gandolf, Chief Executive Officer

Woman looking at the RiseVision signage screen

Photo: Rise Vision/Health Facilities Management

Not so long ago, you might have seen advances in digital sign technology as minor wizardry. But today contemporary consumers—routinely surrounded by big-screens and monitors—see anything less as "aging analog."

The traditional state-of-the-art in signage consisted of a static display with Helvetica words, symbols and maybe an occasional graphic. In contrast, progressive hospitals and medical centers are turning to the now-standard generation of computer-smart signage that’s attention getting, dynamic and interactive.

One of the principal reasons for bringing high-tech solutions to (formerly) lowly signs is to improve the patient and visitor experience.

Administrators, public relations and marketing professionals all recognize that hardly anyone really likes “going to the hospital,” even as a visitor. So for patients, family, friends, vendors, employees and the community at large, digital display technology is helping to welcome, guide the way, inform…and generally to make for a more comfortable experience.

SecureEdge healthcare animation

Photo: SecureEdge Networks

We all have experienced the retail and commercial world embracing large-format LCD Video Walls, changeable custom displays and talking touch screens. Being this commonplace tells you that the hardware and software technology is proven, mature and stable.

Marketing executives immediately recognize the communications and operational advantages that include:

Affordability. Economies of scale in the digital sign industry have reduced the cost of technology, bringing it within reach of health care facilities.

Flexibility. A static sign is…well, static. A large display can display multiple, changing messages that serve multiple purposes, if needed, varying during the time of day or audience at hand.

Computers, cloud storage and wireless options. Sending signals (rather than stringing wires) is not only more cost effective, some signs facilitate streaming content, be immediately re-purposed or relocated. Emergency alerts and immediate advisories are an important option.

Enhanced experience. A changeable or interactive digital display can deliver multiple communications objectives. The visitor can see way-finding information, special or short-term notices, cafeteria menus, health education material, gift shop hours, fundraising messages, staff recognitions, branding and storytelling, and many other marketing and messaging objectives.

Largely because of their effectiveness and long useful lifecycle, professional signage—both internal and external—remains a cost-effective investment for a high Return-on-Investment in healthcare.

As further reference, the online publication Digital Signage Today features recent case examples and real-world images of healthcare and hospital digital signs at work. If you need help with getting started, reach out to us anytime. And for related reading from our marketing reference library, see: How Digital Signage Systems Improve Health Services and Signs of the Future: This Billboard is Looking at You, Mrs. Jones.

Lonnie Hirsch

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