As digital wayfinding software becomes more of an integral component to any healthcare facility, the need to utilize wayfinding design to accommodate all demographics of patients continues to grow. Reports estimate that over 50% of healthcare clinic patients receive all their information inside a facility from digital signage and wayfinding software. This means that not only do healthcare facilities have to be more aware of the accuracy and accessibility of their wayfinding and digital signage content, but they also need to ensure that these resources are accommodating to patients of all walks of life.
Perhaps the most important audience hospitals need to accommodate with their wayfinding software are elderly patients. Senior citizens generally account for more hospital and healthcare clinic visits than any other demographic, with over 14% of U.S. adults aged 65-74 having multiple hospital visits in recent years. Other reports indicate that by the year 2030, more than 20% of the U.S. population will be over the age of 65, only cementing the need for hospitals to ensure that their wayfinding software and designs are more accessible to elderly patients.
In order to move forward with more elderly-focused wayfinding content and devices in mind, it’s important to comprehend what wayfinding aid resources will compliment senior citizen hospital patients' needs, making their stay as informative and comforting as possible.
To help make your healthcare clinic as accommodating and accessible as possible, here are a few ways you can specifically curate your digital wayfinding software and content to elderly patients.
Efficient Navigational Resources
Navigating around large and elaborate healthcare facilities can be challenging for anyone, let alone elderly patients who could be suffering from varying forms of cognitive impairment. The less digital wayfinding signage systems you have implemented into your hospital, the more difficult it can be for seniors to find their way around your clinic.
In addition to having ample mapping resources located in convenient areas throughout your facilities, having too many symbols, icons, or too much information in general can also be overwhelming and confusing for elderly patients. Make sure your digital signage mapping is as clear and concise as possible to allow for easily interpretive directions.
Keep Content Relevant and Consistent
The general themes in regards to the content of your digital wayfinding signage systems essentially boil down to: navigation, information, and updates. With those three themes in mind, it’s also important to keep all of these details as relevant and consistent as possible, to avoid bombarding elderly patients with an overabundance of information.
Be sure to do away with any dated or expired information, such as old events, resolved notifications, or stale news. Consider limiting news or update content to waiting and patient rooms, while keeping digital signage content in the hallways strictly geared toward navigational resources. The more consistent and concise your digital wayfinding signage content is, the easier it will be for eldelry patients to absorb and retain imperative information.
Install a Calm, Yet Confident Tone
While keeping information and content relevant and concise is helpful to reduce stress for elderly patients, the tone and verbiage of your digital wayfinding signage content is just as important to keep in mind when considering its potential interpretation with seniors.
For example, if urgent warnings or emergency notifications are posted throughout the digital signage of your healthcare clinic, strong, intimidating, and alarming language may stress out or even frighten elderly patients who were previously unaware of such information. Consider using calm, yet confident tone and language to detail any urgent information, so the message can be interpreted in an understanding, yet tranquil manner.
Avoid Visual Clutter
Content aside, there is a chance that your message isn’t received by eldelry patients at all if the visual layout and design of your wayfinding resources is cluttered or overly stimulating. Senior patients with eyesight impairment need clear design framing, colors, and patterns to help adequately interpret any directions or content digital signage is displaying. Make sure to space out words and sentences as suitably as possible, and keep your colors or patterns at a minimum.
Custom Wayfinding Solutions for Your Healthcare Clinic Needs
Curating wayfinding designs and content to ensure all your patients are accommodated for can be a daunting, yet necessary task. If you’re interested in implementing more elderly-friendly digital wayfinding signage design and content into your healthcare facility, Express Image has the custom resources and solutions necessary to provide senior patients with the utmost accommodation.
Contact us today to request a demo of our services, or give us a call at 651-237-5677 to speak directly with one of our digital wayfinding experts.