A major upgrade of the Waitemata DHB website has resulted in a more user friendly website for the general public.
Thousands of people access information through our website every month so it is important that the content is up to date, and that the design allows people to access the information they need easily. With that in mind, we went out to our community to ask them what information they most wanted on the website, and how it should look. We re-developed the site in collaboration with the health literacy review groups and with wider community input.
As a result the website design has become much clearer, making more use of icons rather than words. We also took a 'less is more' approach to the content so that wherever possible the information is provided in easy-to-read bullet points rather than long paragraphs. Perhaps the most important change is that the website now provides immediate access to important information like parking and visiting hours, and information about staying in hospital. The site represents best-in-class design and layout as far as the NZ health sector is concerned and aligns brilliantly with our values and our ongoing patient experience work.
Examples of icons used in our new website
The responsive style is part of our drive to grow the Waitemata DHB’s online presence and make it easier to locate information in a more interactive experience. The new design is also mobile-friendly, allowing users to access the website on their phone or tablet. Web content editor Joan Duignan, who managed the project, says advancements in web technology meant an update of the website was required.
"Most users now access webpages on their smart phone or tablet device and the previous design just simply wasn’t able to cater for such demands." she says. "A modern webpage in 2015 has to be clean and easy to navigate. Instead of a large body of text most users just want a button or logo leading them to the information they want, like parking which is easily labelled on our main page."
New Waitemata DHB website displayed on a smartphone [View larger image]
Since the re-launch the number of visitors to the website has grown substantially from 25,000 in July to 34,000 in October due to the website being built to take advantage of search engines. A large part of the web content is aimed at patients and their whanau. Videos of former patients sharing their experiences or photo galleries of a day at the Elective Surgery Centre are intended to make a patient’s experience informative and more relaxing.
"The fear of the unknown can be stressful for anyone, particularly those going to hospital.” Duignan says. "Basic web content explaining the different uniforms worn by our staff, or photos of the various wards and surgical theatre rooms, means a patient will know who and what to expect.
Below are images from the redesign of our website for Waitemata DHB:
Patient and visitor information
Hospitals and clinics information
Other organisational information