KGH launches all new website

News / General / Technology
By Peter Jeffrey

Patients and families helped develop it at every step

Welcome to Kingston General Hospital's new website, now that you are here, you're sure to be in for a whole new experience. Along with an all-new look and feel, you’ll see the site has our commitment to Patient- and Family-Centred Care written all over it.

“When we decided it was time to revitalize our website, we focused on creating a site that gives patients and families exactly what they need to have the best possible experience with our hospital,” says Theresa MacBeth, Director of Strategy Management and Communications. “We could only do that by working together with patients and families to design it right from the very start.”

This work began earlier this year with focus groups being held with departments and programs across the hospital. Patients and their families took part in these sessions, as did other regular users of our website such as physicians, staff, new hires, volunteers and learners.

From there, staff content coordinators, together with the Patient Experience Advisors assigned to each of their clinical programs, began the job of drafting helpful and easy-to-understand information for their sections of the website. Once it was all ready to go, all 60 or so of our Patient Experience Advisors were invited to review the information and the overall site was assessed and tested by members of our Patient and Family Advisory Council.

“We learned a lot along the way about what people are looking for in a modern website. That meant we were able to tailor the site to ensure it is as useful as possible for everyone who visits it,” says MacBeth. “It’s essentially a website designed by patients, families and staff for patients, families and staff.”  

It all adds up to a unique experience. For starters, as you may have noticed when you first landed on the homepage, a special screen popped up that gave you the option to identify yourself as either a patient, family member or visitor; a job seeker, volunteer or learner; or a healthcare provider or researcher. It's a tool we built to help our users get to the content they are looking for, as quickly as possible.

Many parts of the website have also been crafted to help prepare patients for what to expect during their journey to, through and from KGH. For example, the Diagnostic Imaging Care section walks people through the different types of imaging procedures we perform and includes information to help them get ready for their appointment.

The website also includes two sub-sites. One is dedicated to the KGH Research Institute and highlights the millions of dollars-worth of research performed here each year. The other sub-site focuses on Learning at KGH and our interprofessional education efforts.

The new website was designed to work seamlessly on mobile technologies, including all cellphones and tablets. It is also fully accessible as we worked with a vendor recognized as being a leader in accessible web design to ensure the site is easy for people of all abilities to navigate and read and has the technology necessary to support people who are visually impaired. 

“Overall, this new website will help us improve our communication with everyone who is counting on us. As a result, it will have a positive impact on the patient experience at KGH,” says MacBeth. “We want to keep adding new and helpful content to the site and ensure that it is always evolving to meet people’s needs, so we are eager to hear their feedback!”