Efficient Healthcare: The Role of Kiosks in Medical Facilities

4 minutes
Katie Kochelek
healthcare patient check-in kiosk

Efficient Healthcare: The Role of Kiosks in Medical Facilities

4 minutes
Katie Kochelek
healthcare patient check-in kiosk

Self-service kiosks have automated tasks and procedures in countless industries, and the healthcare sector is no exception.

Whether used to enhance patient flow with check-in, offer wayfinding and self-ordering capabilities, or simplify vendor registration, healthcare kiosk solutions benefit medical facilities in a variety of ways and across numerous departments.

Learn the most common use cases for self-service technology in the healthcare space.

Use Case #1: Patient Check-In

A growing number of healthcare facilities are employing self-service kiosks to automate the patient check-in process – and for good reason.

Higher turnover in non-clinical positions has led to labor shortages in this industry, so many healthcare systems have turned to self-service technology to augment their current workforce. Additionally, patient check-in kiosks can support further services, like bill payment and personal information updates.

Patient flow, or how a patient moves through the system from the scheduling phase through seeing a doctor, is important to healthcare facilities. Making this path more efficient is a common objective, and many Electronic Health Record (EHR) programs used by these health systems offer patient portals that connect their health record database to mobile apps and kiosks.

For larger health systems or those that use EHR software that offer patient portals, integrating kiosks into their check-in process is easy and allows patients to schedule appointments, alert medical staff they’ve arrived for their visit, and update health or insurance records.

For smaller facilities or ones that use EHR systems that don’t support patient portals, there are still options to automate the patient flow using healthcare kiosks. This can be done by investing in cost-effective software programs designed to perform specific tasks like patient scheduling or bill payment. These don’t communicate with an EHR system, but still provide data to administrators through the software’s dashboard and can streamline smaller tasks like appointment scheduling, check-in, and copay costs.

Whether through an EHR-integrated system or specialized software solutions, medical check-in kiosks streamline the patient flow process, benefitting both large and small health facilities seeking automation.

Use Case #2: Wayfinding

Among healthcare kiosk solutions, wayfinding is a growing use case to enhance the patient experience.

Large hospital campuses and medical buildings can be confusing to navigate, and stale letterboards and printed signage are dated and difficult to revise quickly. Enter wayfinding kiosks as a solution.

Not only can visitors use the interactive touchscreen to find directions, but the kiosk can also provide answers to basic questions commonly asked at an information desk, like what the cafeteria hours are or how much valet parking costs.

The biggest advantage to replacing traditional signage with digital wayfinding kiosks is the ability to update information in real time. Guests can quickly find the new medical group that moved in or learn the lab will be closed for an upcoming holiday – all controlled by administrators who can update the units promptly.

And because wayfinding kiosk screens are typically larger, they’re also a perfect place to showcase advertising on the digital screen when not in use. An attract loop, named because it draws attention to the kiosk while its idle, can serve as another avenue for promoting charity walks, marketing the latest vaccination, or highlighting a new doctor at a practice.

Healthcare wayfinding kiosks are rapidly proving their worth in this sector, particularly in large medical facilities. Their interactive nature not only ensures easy navigation, but also keeps visitors informed in real time.

Use Case #3: Self-Order

Hospitals cater to more than just patients, which means visitors and employees take advantage of common on-site amenities, like gift shops, pharmacies, and cafeterias.

Taking a cue from the hospitality and food sectors, healthcare facilities are recognizing the benefits of self-order kiosks. The technology frees existing workers to tackle other duties or allows one employee to oversee multiple checkout stations. This not only fills labor shortages but enables customers to check out much quicker.

Self-order kiosks in healthcare facilities are bridging the gap between convenience and efficiency. Whether it’s speeding up the checkout process in a gift shop or offering a quick grab-and-go option next to the cafeteria, kiosks can offer advantages in multiple areas of a hospital.

Use Case #4: Vendor Check-In

It’s common for large medical facilities to require vendors to check in at a dedicated location instead of the lobby. This streamlines the process and keeps service providers and constant deliveries from impacting the patient experience in main waiting areas.

Often, regular suppliers must check in or scan a badge for entry. Instead of requiring constant manning, utilizing kiosks at these stations allows for a secure check-in process for established vendors.

In addition, these healthcare vendor kiosks can also register new service providers who need to fill out electronic forms for the proper approvals.

Vendor check-in kiosks are a testament to the evolving dynamics of healthcare facility management. By automating the process, medical sites ensure both security and efficiency, and alleviate congestion in primary areas.

Healthcare Kiosk Solutions for Every Department

In the evolving landscape of healthcare, the integration of self-service kiosks promises a more streamlined and elevated visitor experience. From patient and vendor check-in to digital wayfinding and self-ordering, the variety of healthcare kiosk solutions address pain points for both patients and organizations and are rapidly becoming essential in medical facilities.

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