Visiting hospitals can be a stressful experience for patients and their families, making it important to consider how hospitals can provide end-to-end support that includes a focus on entertainment and enrichment of downtime. One of the ways to do this is by implementing a patient entertainment platform.
At WiFi SPARK, we’ve built a comprehensive Patient Engagement Platform — SPARK® Media — that offers everything from free entertainment to meal ordering and clinical integration.
One of the packages within SPARK® Media is the Entertain package. SPARK® Media: Entertain delivers free TV, radio, newspapers and magazines, games, health videos and many other services to any WiFi-enabled device with a web browser. It’s free to use, available and inclusive.
In this article, we look at the benefits of hospital TV, what's included in SPARK® Entertain and also outline our vision to transform the future of patient experience by making hospital TV packages free by 2024.
What Are the Benefits of Hospital TV?
Spending time in hospital can be a lonely experience. Patients have no choice but to spend much of their time in their hospital beds. Many can feel isolated, leading to a 29% increased mortality risk — especially in older patients.
Hospital TV is one of the most effective solutions to help patients overcome this feeling of isolation or loneliness. Access to the latest award-winning series or a classical film offers a great distraction for someone waiting for surgery or the next consultation with their doctor.
It's also a way to stay in touch with the outside world. Hospital TV allows patients to watch the news or the latest sporting event. By keeping up with life outside the hospital walls, patients can be given a real morale boost and feel optimistic about leaving the hospital.
The latest innovations mean hospital TV can offer more than 'just TV'. On top of live channels and on-demand shows, patients can access educational content suited to their specific health concerns. This content can also be used by doctors and nurses when giving information and advice to patients. It’s often easier to explain a condition or treatment if there’s educational content on hand to assist them.
It can be hard to receive feedback from a patient during their stay in hospital and they’re unlikely to provide any after they’ve left. This means hospitals, both private and the NHS, are missing out on valuable opinions and data that can shape hospital decisions and improve services.
With the latest hospital TV systems, patients can access survey and feedback features which organisations can use to improve their services and meet the demands of future patients. Ultimately, all of the benefits above contribute to a better patient experience.
We've discussed more about the future of patient experience and how entertainment and education provided by TV systems can contribute to painting a more positive picture. Access your copy below.
SPARK® Entertain: What's Included?
SPARK® Entertain delivers entertainment directly to the user’s own device. This ultimate media package provides access to TV channels, newspapers, magazines, on-demand movies, TV box sets and eBooks.
SPARK® Entertain also provides channels 1-5 free of charge and all channels are free in children’s wards. We can provide access to any channel in the world via satellite services and provide access to Sky TV channels, such as Sky Sports, Sky Movies, Sky Atlantic, National Geographic Channel plus many more.
To help you get a better picture of what's included in SPARK® Entertain, here's a round-up of the different features:
Newspapers and Magazines
This can be included in the SPARK® Media: Entertain package or offered as a standalone product. There are three Print bundle options — Bronze, Silver and Gold — with the difference being Bronze offers 10 magazines, Silver offers six magazines and four major newspapers, and Gold offers 10 magazines and four newspapers.
WiFi SPARK has access to 9,562 worldwide digital print titles and we can work with you to build a custom library that best suit your visitors.
SPARK® Media: Entertain provides access to various media, including TV channels, video, on-demand movies, TV box sets and eBooks. The package includes all channels free of charge at all times. We can also provide access to any channel in the world via satellite services and provide access to Sky TV channels.
We offer a huge library of content stored directly in the cloud, saving you valuable internet bandwidth required for streaming internet movies.
At WiFi SPARK, we recognise that no two hospitals are the same and each facility provides care for varying conditions. That’s why we offer tailored services for those diagnosed with dementia. Platforms such as BBC Reminiscence Archive and the BBC Sounds Archive are aimed at those living with dementia and provide content from across the BBC archive, which is all available from within SPARK® Media: Entertain.
On top of this, patients, staff and visitors can access the NHSX Education Video Library and Apps Library, as well as a wealth of NHS-approved information. Whether it be to learn or to better understand their own ailments, patients can be provided with accurate and informative sites that allow them to play an active role in their care.
We understand some patients prefer to rest while listening to the radio. That's why we provide integration to radio services. Plus, there’s no need to download an app. All the user needs to do is log in through any web browser and they’ll have access to radio and other services at their fingertips.
For those without a personal device, hospital-owned tablets can also access this service and be mounted to mobile media units to distribute around wards.
Bolt-on TV and Entertainment Package Options
As well as offering free TV channels, additional services are available to provide more choices to patients. We offer three bolt-on package options in two customisable stages to meet your needs and budget.
Pay to play each movie
Free to access movie bundles
TV Series Boxsets
Pay per episode/season
Free to access
Pay per read
Free to access
We understand you're likely to have unique requirements, so to receive a quote best suited to your needs, it’s best to contact our team.
How We're Making Hospital TV Packages in the UK Free by 2024
Back in November 2021, we joined forces with Hospedia as we had a vision. Instead of asking patients to pay high charges for entertainment and calls, we aim to install new software on terminals in the UK so patients can access our SPARK® Media entertainment package for free.
This will be done in a four-phased approach. Existing Hospedia sites can upgrade during the first phase to add our BYOD SPARK® Media solution. Here, patients can access free or paid TV on the BYOD system and services like Netflix and Amazon Video, where they already have accounts.
During phase 2, a new bedside terminal will be available. This will include a bedside wall mounted, meal trolly table and workstations on wheels. Other features included are:
- Clinical apps
- Meal ordering
- Games and entertainment
- Patient education
Phase 3 will see all bedside and Trust mobile terminals provide security to clinical systems. Finally, in phase 4, all patient and visitor services will be offered free at the point of use. Here's what our WiFi SPARK CEO Matt O'Donovan has to say about our vision and how it’ll improve the patient experience:
"WiFi SPARK is set to embark on a new and exciting chapter and it's all about looking beyond patient entertainment to revolutionise engagement for patients and staff across the NHS."
Improve Patient Experience With SPARK® Entertain
Boredom is common in hospitals. In fact, 70% of people asked in a survey stated they didn’t have enough to do when they were in hospital. Patients are isolated from their friends and family for long periods without many distractions from their normal routines.
That’s why an entertainment platform is key to improving the patient experience. Are you ready to transform your Trust? Whether you want to speak to us about what SPARK® Media: Entertain can offer you or discuss the package in more detail, go ahead and contact us below. Our team will be happy to help.