New signs make it easier for KGH patients

Health and Safety Manager Chris Sawyer, Head of Estates Roy Ridler, Deputy Director of Estates and Facilities Craig Catterick and Director of Estates and Facilities Derek Shaw holding one of the new orientation maps and colour coded key to the hospitals departments.

Health and Safety Manager Chris Sawyer, Head of Estates Roy Ridler, Deputy Director of Estates and Facilities Craig Catterick and Director of Estates and Facilities Derek Shaw holding one of the new orientation maps and colour coded key to the hospitals departments.

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Kettering General Hospital is replacing all of its internal directional signs to make it easier for patients and visitors to find their way around.

Hundreds of existing signs – put up over many years and in many different styles – are being replaced with a modern system of colour-coding and large maps.

The work will begin in early October and should be completed within a week.

Kettering General Hospital’s director of estates and facilities Derek Shaw said: “We have been aware for some time that the hospital’s signage is inconsistent and can be confusing – especially to new patients or visitors.

“The trust hasn’t had a substantial review of its signage for at least 20 years and we decided that now was a good time to modernise and simplify what we have to ‘get the basics right’ for our patients and visitors.

“We will be retaining our prominent external signs – to places like A&E, outpatients and Rockingham Wing – but within the hospital itself our internal signs will all be changing.

“Patients who are invited to hospital for appointments will receive more detailed directions on their appointment letter than ever before.

“The letter will let them know which entrance and car park to use and which colour-coded area of the hospital they need to head for to find their destination.”

The hospital is being divided into nine colour-coded areas – each of which also has a letter of the alphabet.

If your destination is in area A (blue) you would follow signs to this area.

On arrival in the blue area you would then see a large map which describes exactly which rooms/departments are contained within area A so that you know exactly where to go.

Mr Shaw added: “When we decided to improve signage we looked at several other hospitals which had made changes which had made it easier for patients to find their way around.

“Then we met with representatives from across the trust to decide what would work best for us before deciding on this option.”

Anyone who arrives at the trust without a letter (for example someone visiting a ward) will be able to consult one of the major orientation maps and keys at the main entrances which will direct them to the right area.

Each colour coded area will also have a map indicating rooms and departments within that area.

The project will cost the trust £10,000 to complete after they purchased a special machine that will enable them to produce our own signs and maps going forwards.