What's the Best Way to Boost Patient Engagement in Healthcare?

January 24, 2022

Patients who are engaged tend to have better health outcomes. 

If you can provide your patients with better-than-average health outcomes, they’re likely to stay loyal to your clinic. This means there’s a direct link between keeping your patients engaged and your bottom line.

We’ve put together this article to teach you about one of the most effective ways to boost your patient engagement numbers: digital signage.

Keep reading to learn how to leverage this tool to reach your patient engagement goals.

Digital signage and patient engagement: almost endless versatility 

Digital signage may be the best way to boost patient engagement in healthcare because it’s so versatile.

You can use it to:

  • Advertise services that boost engagement
  • Teach patients the benefits of being engaged in their healthcare
  • Remove barriers to care so that patients have fewer things keeping them from seeking care
  • Broadcast important health information that helps patients to stay informed

We’ll tell you how to use digital signage to do all of these things in the sections below.

Here’s what you need to get started

Digital signage is made up of a few distinct components. It consists of:

  • Screens (like televisions and tablets)
  • Digital signage software
  • A media player

Many digital signage software providers have their own media players. With this in mind, it often makes sense to start by selecting the software that you’re going to use and then building the rest of your digital signage solution around it.

When selecting screens, you’ll want to pick ones that align with your specific goals. For example, if you want to use digital signage to let patients check themselves into your clinic, you would need to opt for touchscreens to make that happen.

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Don’t let these common mistakes bring down your engagement metrics

Before diving into the specifics of how to use digital signage to boost your patient engagement numbers, it’s worth looking at a few potential pitfalls you might encounter along the way.

Poor screen placement

If you want patients to get something out of your digital signage, they have to be able to see the screens that you use – no matter where they are in your clinic.

That’s why it’s important to think carefully about screen placement before investing in a digital signage solution.

Uninspiring or boring content

The messages that you share through digital signage are really important. But it’s equally important how you share that information with your audience.

If the content that you share is interesting, then people are more likely to pay attention to it. Make sure that you take the time to design engaging ads to get as much out of digital signage as possible.

Picking the wrong software

The software that you pick can also have a huge influence on how effective your digital signage solution is. 

You’ll usually want to opt for a software package that allows you to easily design custom displays and choose from pre-existing templates. It’s also helpful if your digital signage software can double as your waiting room entertainment.

How to boost patient engagement with digital signage: A step by step guide 

Now that we know what to avoid, let’s get into how you can use digital signage to boost patient engagement in your healthcare clinic or practice.

Step 1: Add digital signage to your practice

The first step to boosting your patient engagement numbers is setting up your digital signage solution in your practice. 

As you do that, be sure to consider what it is exactly that you want to do with your digital signage system, since that could influence the best way to organize it.

For example, maybe you want to use digital signage to keep your patients entertained in the waiting area. If so, you’d want to make sure that you have screens that are large enough for people to see, no matter where they sit.

Or, perhaps you’d like your patients to be able to check themselves in with digital signage. In that case, you would want to invest in touch screens so that they could do that.

Step 2: Share important health information

One of the best ways to get patients more engaged with their health is through education. You can do that by using digital signage to share messages about common health problems like obesity, diabetes and the flu.

You can also use your digital signage to educate patients about the importance of remaining engaged. Utilizing this type of advertising can help to get patients thinking about how they engage with their healthcare plan, and whether there are ways they could be more engaged. 

Education around common health issues, as well as understanding that their level of engagement can directly influence their health outcomes, can be powerful motivators for driving patient engagement. 

Step 3: Advertise your offerings in your clinic

Chances are, your healthcare clinic offers a few services that can help people engage with their care plans more effectively.

If you can get a greater percentage of your patients using things like telemedicine, patient portals and mobile health apps, then you’re likely to see your engagement numbers rise.

That’s why it’s also a good move to use digital signage to advertise these engagement-centric services. Bringing these tools to the front of patients’ minds is the first step towards getting them to use them. And digital signage is a subtle yet effective way to do just that. 

Step 4: Make it easier for patients to visit your healthcare setting

You can also use digital signage to eliminate some of the perceived barriers that patients may have in their minds about coming to see you.

For example, many patients will avoid going to the doctor because of long wait times. You can focus on bringing wait times down for your patients by letting them check themselves in with digital signage.

This improves wait times because it frees up your front office staff to focus on other important tasks besides checking patients in. That way, they can get patients in and out of your office as efficiently as possible.

Eliminating other common barriers to care – whether perceived or real – can be a great way to make visiting your clinic more convenient for your patients, and to boost patient engagement.  

Other strategies for boosting your patient engagement figures

Digital signage is a great catch-all solution for improving your patient engagement figures. 

However, it’s definitely not the only way to work towards this goal. Here are a few other strategies that you can try alongside digital signage.

Remote patient monitoring

Technology like the Apple Watch and Fitbit enables patients to keep tabs on important health metrics while at home. Your healthcare clinic may benefit from adding technology that allows it to track this information.

This can be effective because it could help your patients feel connected to your clinic even when they don't have an appointment. And when you help patients feel more connected to their health, their engagement typically goes up.

Email newsletter

Another idea is to start up an email newsletter for your practice. These can be a good way to remind patients to keep tabs on their health.

A busy patient may not think about their health plan very often. But if you send them a health-focused newsletter every week, they’re likely to see it and start thinking about their health as a result. That’s a great way to promote engagement.

Social media availability

Nowadays, almost everybody is on social media. 

That’s why it could also be a good strategy for your clinic to maintain a presence on popular social media sites like Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram.

You don’t have to be available 24/7 on these platforms. But you could ask a staff member to respond to questions once or twice a day so that people feel like they can reach you on their social media site of choice.

Patients appreciate it when you make it easy for them to stay in touch with you.

Build a mobile app

The average person uses 9 mobile apps per day.  

That makes mobile apps another excellent channel for keeping your patients engaged. You may want to consider building an app if you haven’t already.

If you can integrate your mobile app with technologies like Fitbit and Apple Watch, even better. The goal should be to create an app that helps patients stay on top of their health more effectively.

Digital signage software from UPshow makes it easy to engage patients

Do you think digital signage is right for your practice? If so, UPshow can help you take full advantage of the technology.

Our digital signage software offers a ton of pre-built and customizable display options. It also comes with more than 500 channels of live streaming entertainment for your waiting room.

Even better, you can track your digital signage’s performance over time with our built-in analytics tool. Collectively, these features make UPshow the easiest way to boost patient engagement in healthcare.

But don’t take our word for it. Get a free custom demo of UPshow today to see what kind of benefit it could drive for your clinic.

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