Wall charts and posters can be powerful educational tools--if you use them. If you feel self-conscious saddling up to a wall poster with a patient out of the blue and making a point, annotating your posters makes it easy!
Annotation is merely writing or drawing on your posters. With your Patient Media posters protected behind glass, use a dry erasable marker to handwrite a comment or question on the glass. Or attach Post-it® notes to your posters. Or tape newspaper clippings or magazine articles to your posters. Or attach aspirin or some other 3-dimensional object to your poster. And then watch the fun begin! This can produce wonderful effects with your patients because...
It's a pattern interruption. After a couple of visits, most patients stop noticing your office details. Annotating your posters serves as a "pattern interruption" causing patients to become present and notice their environment.
It amplifies the message. By attaching your own comments to a poster, it can serve to highlight your philosophy or unique way of looking at the world. In the process, you can profoundly change a patient's perception without saying a thing. Hear more patients say, "Gee, I never thought about it like that before."
It stimulates questions. Interested patients make comments and ask questions. Their interest is an invitation and an opening to share and explore the implications of the message. If patients don't comment, no problem. (Still, you'll be surprised what they pick up!)
It's fun. Frankly, annotating your posters can be a lot of fun. It's a nonconfrontive way of revealing your beliefs, adding humor and causing patients to think without the confrontation of lecturing to uninterested patients. (If this sounds like fun be sure to add a white board to your office for a completely new realm of possibilities!)
Here are some suggested annotations for some of our most popular posters. If you have some suggestions, please share them and we'll post them here for the rest of the Patient Media family.