The benefits of digital signage in care homes
Coronavirus has had a truly devastating impact on thousands of families across the UK and one of the great tragedies of the pandemic has been the effect on care homes.
The sickness and fatality rates among the nation’s most vulnerable were truly shocking and as we move towards a potential second spike of COVID-19, our care and nursing homes must be safe and secure from this horrible virus.
Digital screens have been used for years at hospitals and in retail stores to help convey information and direct people safely, so why has it taken care homes so long to catch on?
There is expected to be dramatic growth in pensioners aged 85 and over in the next 5 years and they are all going to need a place to feel safe from the impact of coronavirus. Digital signage solutions could be the answer.
Communication with staff
It’s not just the patients that would benefit from a digital signage overhaul, staff almost certainly would too.
Screens can be installed in staff rooms to remind staff of hourly schedules and assign responsibilities for the day so there is no confusion.
It can also be used to convey general medical information, which is particularly relevant in an age where the messaging regarding COVID seems to be changing by the week.
Another practical solution could be to invest in digital hand sanitiser stations, which could be stationed around the care home for staff to use as and when necessary.
With many care home staff operating in multiple homes, there is a significant potential from cross contamination if they are not regularly sanitised, so this could be crucial.
The stations could also double as screens for communication, displaying the same information as the screen in the staff room and around the home.
The encouragement of wellbeing
At a care home, you’re dealing every day with an audience that might struggle to hear at the best of times. This means it can be difficult to get a cohesive message across to patients, particularly in larger homes.
Digital signage can be used to clearly show images and messages to guide patients, whether that’s through daily mobility exercises or visual reminders to maintain social distancing and wash hands regularly.
Screens can also be used to help treat dementia patients, with the displays able to act as visual reminders to assist in everyday life.
This can mean anything from gentle reminders about the schedule and the layout of the care home to images of loved ones and happy times to help them cling on to memories of the past.
The convenience and safety of visitors
For the care home still allowing visitation, it’s important that visitors can feel safe, know where they’re going, and maintain distance from their relatives and friends to mitigate the risk of transference.
Digital signage can be used on entry to communicate rules and regulations around COVID biosecurity and keeping residents safe, laying down the law, so to speak, and letting visitors know that your establishment takes the measures seriously.
With visitors, it’s also important that they know where they’re going and don’t end up where they shouldn’t be, as this runs the risk of further contamination. Digital wayfinding is an ideal solution here, as it’s not only clear but can be reinforced by audio cues and can also be changed on the fly to help guide visitors who might be unfamiliar with the layout of the home.