Is your waiting room full of outdated furniture, old magazines, and harsh lighting? Not only can this create a bad first impression for patients new to your practice, it can actually adversely affect their health. When patients spend time in a waiting room, they often feel anxious about their upcoming appointment. A well-designed waiting room can help promote relaxation and improve patient satisfaction and health from the moment a patient walks through your doors. If your waiting room is in need of a redesign, medical office financing from Bankers Healthcare Group can help. The below elements will help you design a room that puts patients at ease and makes a great impression.
Depending on their appointment time and your daily schedule, patients may have to spend considerable time in the waiting room. Uncomfortable seating can make this wait seem even longer, and can put patients in a bad frame of mind. Improve the patient experience by providing the right seating. It’s important to make sure there is enough comfortable seating to accommodate every patient. Try to arrange furniture into several distinct areas so patients are able to stake out their own space get comfortable. Don’t forget to include a few small side tables for convenience.
A waiting room with lots of natural light is automatically more welcoming and relaxing than one lit by fluorescent overhead bulbs. Consider installing some large windows or skylights, depending on your location. If that sort of renovation isn’t possible, switch to LED lights or the more high-tech option of OLED lighting, which can provide a range of light to match natural daylight patterns.
A silent waiting room can increase anxiety. It’s not exactly soothing to hear someone sniffle on the opposite side of the room, or the person two chairs down shifting nervously in their seat. Consider adding a small tabletop fountain, a white noise machine, or installing some speakers to play soft classical music. Ambient background noise can promote relaxation and make a waiting room feel less clinical and harsh, ultimately improving patient satisfaction.
Artwork & Plants
Homey touches like artwork on the walls and plants throughout the room can also make your waiting room more welcoming and calming. Avoid flowering plants in case any of your patients have allergies, and choose artwork in soothing tones. Consider a few small decorative rugs if your flooring is tile or linoleum.
If you want to offer magazines, make sure to replace them regularly when they start to get worn, and offer a range of publications to suit different interests. Alternatively, consider stocking your waiting room with a variety of books and materials related to healthy living. Include some healthy cookbooks, books on meditation and yoga, and publications on managing stress and leading a healthy lifestyle. Patients are more likely to treat books carefully than magazines, so they will likely hold up longer and can help encourage your patients to learn more about their own health.