Is your hospital Trust in the market for a new communication platform? Maybe you want some screens to enliven your waiting areas? Maybe you’ve already bought some, but are having trouble with the next step. It pays to shop around, compare prices and figure out exactly what you want before you go rushing into anything. Information screens can be very expensive, and need to be properly utilised to provide worth to your hospital and to your patients. Let’s have a look at the four main points you should consider when purchasing a screen based communication platform for your Trust.
1. The Cost
Screens and all of their related paraphernalia aren’t cheap. Compare prices. Find out if there’s a way for the screens to be cost neutral, or even if there’s a way for the screens to generate revenue for your Trust. The Patient Information Initiative offers both of these options, talk to us and see if there’s a way to make it work for your Trust.
Once you’ve bought screens they’ll need to be installed. Have you thought about where they should be placed? Screens are best placed in high traffic areas, like outpatient clinics, main entrances, cafes, Emergency Departments and busy hallways. Once you’ve sorted your locations there’s a whole lot of technical stuff to go through. Have you got media players? Do you need licences for third party software? Does this all bring a smile to the face of your IT department or have you spotted them tunnelling under the carpet in frustration? You’ll want to ensure these issues are ironed out before you purchase anything.
Who’s going to look after the screens? You may think it’s not that big of a job, but someone still has to do it. You need to think about new content to place on there, the order of the messages on your playlists, when messages need to go live and come down, what information is going to be a live stream, and what needs an instant RSS feed that should be updated daily on-site. Do your staff have the time and the know how to do all of this on top of their ordinary work? The Patient Information Initiative offers a unique screen management scheme that takes the stress off your staff, while still leaving them the opportunity to input their clinic information and live news updates when necessary via a simple, super-quick interface. You’ll also need to figure out who’s actually creating your messages.
4. Content creation
That leads us nicely onto the creative side. Do you have someone who is able to create your messages? Are they skilled enough in the graphic arts to create messages at the correct pixel size, in the correct colour space and in regulation with your Trust’s branding guidelines? If you’re making messages yourself, will they be slick enough to pass inspection by senior staff? Will they accurately represent your Trust in a professional light? We often find people who have spent a lot of money on screens then fall down on this crucial step. We can happily provide a full creative service for your healthcare messages, even if you already have screens installed. Get in contact and talk us through your needs, we’d love to help. There you have it. The four most important factors to consider when you want to buy patient information screens. Remember, always ask as many questions as you need and try to plan as much as possible before you sign on the dotted line. There are many options out there, find the one that best suits your Trust!