Today’s hospital patient or nursing home resident expects to be able to use WiFi at all times. Regardless of their age, they have a smartphone and are active on social media. Bad healthcare WiFi just isn’t acceptable. More than 75 percent of all patients expect to use digital services during their stay and if they can’t, then they’re going to be frustrated.
Healthcare providers need to ensure their WiFi offering is strong and reliable. This will not only improve patient satisfaction but also open up a wide range of other additional opportunities too.
The Difference Reliable WiFi Makes
Once a reliable WiFi network is implemented, patients and staff will see an immediate difference. It improves a person’s quality of life, giving them access to information, entertainment and social media.
Hospitals, hospices and nursing homes can be lonely places. Family members aren’t always able to visit and it can feel as though the rest of the world is moving on without you. Reliable WiFi lets patients access social media. It lets them video chat with a friendly face or scroll through photos of their child’s holiday.
Little moments like these can make all the difference to a person’s morale and wellbeing. It can be the lift they need to get them through the day. Happier patients are easier to treat – something that staff will certainly appreciate.
Social media can prevent someone from feeling alone and access to entertainment can stop them from feeling bored. Boredom is a serious problem for the healthcare industry. Patient and residents get frustrated and unhappy without anything to do.
Reliable WiFi can help to reduce this problem, giving users access to apps like Netflix and Amazon Prime. Without WiFi, they’re restricted to a magazine or a communal television that’s on in the corner. Once WiFi is up and running, they can choose from thousands of television shows, films, podcasts and audiobooks to enjoy.
They can play online games or do a little bit of shopping to make sure they have everything they need for when they’re discharged.
We’ve covered social media and entertainment, but a reliable WiFi network also gives patients access to educational content. We don’t mean learning a new language or doing a little homework – although both are possible. Patients can view educational articles, videos and more that cover their specific health condition.
For example, the NHS has a huge library of educational material that patients can access. It’s the perfect opportunity for them to learn more about their condition and the steps they should take in the future.
This puts control back into the hands of the patient. It’s easy to feel helpless while being treated but this content ensures that they’re in charge of their own healthcare, allowing them to learn more about their symptoms and possible changes they should make in the future.
Making the Most of the WiFi
A reliable WiFi connection is an essential addition to any hospital or care home. Once it’s introduced and patients are enjoying the benefits, you can start to think about the next steps. If you’ve introduced WiFi but you aren’t thinking about how it can improve processes and reduce costs, then you aren’t utilising its full potential.
For example, WiFi users are providing your hospital, hospice or care home with valuable data that can be used to improve efficiency. The information can show how long someone has stayed at a hospital, the time they were there and where in the hospital they were. This can then be used to modify staff shifts to make sure resources are used in the best possible way.
Streamlining procedures and cutting waste are two vitally important goals in the healthcare industry at the moment. Introducing a bespoke engagement platform that’s part of the WiFi can help hospitals to reach these goals.
Patients can use the platform to make requests for an extra pillow or assistance from a nurse. By requesting help in this way, it ensures the right members of staff are dealing with ad-hoc jobs like these.
It can also be used for ordering meals. It’s something that not many people think about but every single patient needs to be fed three times a day which can be a bit of a logistical nightmare.
Taking meal orders through the platform ensures that the right meal always reaches the right person. There’s no food wasted because a patient has been discharged or moved to a different ward, or the meal is a large portion when they can only manage a small one.
The platform also provides a link with your patients, allowing you to provide information, advice and educational content about their healthcare.