Patients at Ward 7 at the North Shore Hospital will be given free bedside tablets and free WiFi–a first in the country.
The announcement was made by the Waitemata District Health Board (DHB) and Vodafone, which teamed up to make the experience possible.
According to a press release, the decision to provide the gadgets and connectivity is part of a trial that addresses key items raised in the hospital’s patient feedback.
Waitemata DHB CEO Dr Dale Bramley said that patients had consistently told the DHB that having better entertainment and a WiFi connection will improve their stay in the hospital.
“Feedback from Ward 7 patients will be collected and evaluated over the next three to six months but, after only one week of operation, it’s already clear that this is proving a hit,” Dr Bramley said, adding that so far, they’ve seen patients making video calls to their family, and using foreign language apps to communicate better with the staff.
“We’ve also seen people using the bedside tablets to ensure their businesses keep running smoothly – paying bills, organising contractors and staying on top of work matters,” he added.
It is not yet known if North Shore and Waitakere wards will also get the tablets and WiFi–this depends on how the trial will work out.
Vodafone Enterprise Director Ken Tunnicliffe said that this is a great example how staying connected can help recovering patients.
“This is a great example of how innovation and the application of advanced technology within the clinical and patient environment is helping to increase efficiencies in the healthcare sector and enhance the patient’s experience,” he added.