Lymington New Forest Hospital
Lymington New Forest Hospital approached Signs Express (Southampton) to assist them in developing a signage solution across their wards to better suit the needs of their patients with dementia.
Challenge: According to research, cluttered ward layouts and confusing signage is a top reason for causing distress in dementia patients, as people with Alzheimer’s disease often experience perceptual problems.
Solution: To ensure the wards within Lymington New Forest Hospital were appropriately designed to help reduce these issues, we worked closely with hospital staff to develop a solution to make it easier for patients. Firstly, corridors and receptions can often be confusing, so to aid navigation we used paint references supplied by the hospital to create a colour-coded solution that matched perfectly with their bright and welcoming hospital bays. Dementia sufferers may have impaired vision, so the use of contrasting colours can make a significant impact on their ability to read and navigate the building safely. Secondly, as residents may not be able to comprehend complex language, all signs were designed with simplicity in mind. In addition to using clear symbols, designs were also created using pictorial images to help augment understanding.
Results: After piloting the new signage successfully across the hospital’s Wilverley Ward, the decision was made to install 180 signs throughout the rest of the Dementia ward and parts of the main hospital. All elements were printed in-house, using a combination of aluminium, aluminium composite and rigid plastic, and installation was carried out by the team here at Signs Express (Southampton).