Best Hospital Websites Put Patients First

Marianne Aiello, March 28, 2012

There are few things more frustrating on cyberspace than visiting a website and not being able to easily find what you need. It’s the online equivalent of walking into a grocery store abroad and having no idea where to find the milk. You’re forced to meander around, hoping to stumble across the correct aisle, which of course, is in the last place you’d think.

St. Helena website

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Too many hospital websites hide the milk. I can’t tell you how many sites I’ve visited that don’t have a "Contact Us" page, or a page listing all of its service lines, or even a search box.

But do you know what all hospital websites do have? A lengthy "About Us" page, describing the organization’s history in minute detail. And don’t get me wrong, those pages are informative and useful, especially to us journalists.

But to the average patient trying to find out which floor the lab is on, or their cardiologist’s phone number, it’s wasted space.

Hospital websites must be patient-focused. Your website is often the first experience a new patient has with your organization, and if it’s confusing and hard to navigate, you’re already getting off on the wrong foot.


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