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Gallery: Doctor - please report to the touchscreen

Patients at the London hospital will soon be greeted by a touchscreen computer that allows patients to notify hospital staff they have arrived and update their contact details.
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By Andy Smith, Associate Editor on
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King's College Hospital will move towards self-service healthcare with Europe's largest rollout of touchscreen medical kiosks.

From early autumn patients at the London hospital will be greeted by the NCR MediKiosk, a touchscreen computer that allows patients to notify hospital staff they have arrived and update their contact details.

A total of 50 kiosks are being deployed at the hospital's dermatology, haematology, orthopaedics, urology and general surgery clinics as part of the wider NCR patient automated arrival system being fitted at the hospital.

The kiosks will eventually take over more roles from receptionists and clinical staff, targeting patients with health messages on waiting room displays and showing reminders of essential information, such as not to eat before an operation.

Photo credit: NCR Corporation

This gallery was originally posted on "="">silicon.com.

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King's College Hospital NHS Foundation Trust is one of the UK's largest and busiest teaching hospitals, with more than 6,000 staff providing around 700,000 patient appointments per year.

Currently one in seven patients fails to turn up for a scheduled appointment at King's.

About 80 per cent of NHS patients need follow-up consultations and the system will help ensure that emails and letters go to the right place by asking patients to check their details each time they visit, as seen here.

The NCR system can also identify patients who miss appointments allowing staff to reschedule.

Photo credit: NCR Corporation

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The kiosks are part of the wider patient automated arrival system, which will also manage information on when clinicians are free to see patients, relaying messages to waiting room displays and broadcasting announcements to call the next patient forward for their appointment.

Receptionists' computers will also be linked into the system - shown here is a receptionist's screen displaying the traffic-light system for managing appointments.

Howard Lewis, ICT project manager at King's College Hospital NHS Trust, said in a statement: "It will help to improve the immediacy and privacy of patient communications as well as reduce queuing and paperwork."

Photo credit: NCR Corporation

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The hospital, seen here with NCR healthcare director Gordon Lorimer, is also interested in expanding its NCR kiosks' functionality to capture patient feedback on symptoms such as whether they are having trouble sleeping or walking upstairs.

If the first phase of deployment is successful, the system will later extend to Kings' accident and emergency, radiology and other outpatient departments.

Currently, the Camberwell Sexual Health Centre at King's College Hospital already has its own separate touchscreen registration system and self-service machines allowing people to obtain free condoms, pregnancy testing and sexual health screening kits.

Photo credit: NCR Corporation

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Another feature of the system not currently scheduled for use at the hospital is NCR Wayfinding, a digital mapping product that helps patients navigate their way around a hospital, as seen here.

Photo credit: NCR Corporation

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