Randy Pritchard and his wife, Patricia, have had a difficult year, having both dealt with medical issues that required many appointments on the Froedtert & the Medical College of Wisconsin Froedtert Hospital campus. Sometimes, they had to move quickly from one appointment to the next and go from one part of the hospital to another, but the Pritchards are thankful they did not have to worry about finding their way — they use the Froedtert & MCW Finder app.
“The app guides us to wherever we need to go,” Randy said. “We have a million thoughts running through our minds, so it’s nice to not worry about getting lost, being late to an appointment or not being able to find our parking spot. The app has helped reduce our anxiety, and we have been able to focus on staying positive and calm.”
The Froedtert & MCW Finder app launched in late 2017. Since then, there have been more than 6,000 downloads and about 125 uses per day. The app provides turn-by-turn directions (powered by Bluedot location technology), detailed indoor maps and location-based services, including a parking planner feature to help you park in the structure closest to your appointment and a car location saver. The app will detect when you have entered a parking garage and prompt you to save your parking location, or it will automatically remember the location for you and guide you back to it later.
“We were looking for a solution to a big campus problem,” said David Chao, emerging technology principal for Inception Health, the health network’s innovation accelerator. “Historically, health care systems grow and can turn into labyrinths, and we recognized that more physical signs is only part of the answer. We needed a digital solution.”
Inception Health partnered with Connexient LLC, a leader in digital wayfinding and navigation services in the health care field. The same technology that powers the Froedtert & MCW Finder App is used in 58 hospitals across the country.
"The Froedtert & MCW health network is using innovative technology in many ways to transform health care,” said Mike Anderes, president of Inception Health. “With the Froedtert & MCW Finder App, we can enhance the experience of patients and visitors to our academic medical center campus with simple wayfinding from the moment they leave home until they arrive at their appointment. Over time, as we fully integrate the technology with appointment scheduling and reminders, we expect to improve productivity and operational efficiency for our staff as well."
The health network is recruiting volunteers to assist with the app on the Froedtert & MCW Froedtert Hospital campus. In January 2019, mobile wayfinders, or “Froedtert Finders,” will be positioned in key areas of the hospital and will have tablets with the app loaded and ready to use to further simplify the wayfinding experience for patients and visitors.
“The app has been our saving grace during some very challenging times,” Randy said. “I’m not the most tech-savvy guy, and it has been easy for me to use. It has given me the ability to support my wife when she really needs me.”
The Froedtert & MCW finder app is available for free for Apple® and Android™ devices. Click here to download the app on your mobile device. Interested in volunteering at Froedtert & MCW Froedtert Hospital? Visit froedtert.com/giving/volunteer.