Graphic Recording in Health Care

Posted by on Mar 24, 2016 in blog, Graphic Facilitation, graphic recorder, Graphic Recording, Healthcare, Patient Journey Mapping, visual facilitation, Whiteboard Animation, Whiteboard Videos

Health care is evolving with the needs of people and changing technologies. Sometimes progress is slow, other times it’s more immediate. But no matter the pace of change, it’s crucial the health system adapts so it’s sustainable and provides quality care. Graphic recording and other visual communications are powerful tools when integrated with health care planning or public engagement/appreciative inquiry. As a graphic recorder, it requires a keen sensitivity to the topics being discussed, a full-system perspective, and understanding of medical terminology and patient experiences. With this in mind, there are many ways graphic recording and visual communication is helping to shift the health system: Patient Journey Mapping Prior to starting my business five years ago, I spent 5 ½ years in health care. I began in mental health and addictions – specifically the assertive community treatment teams (ACT teams), which provide intensive outreach services for homeless / hard-to-house people with complex mental health or addictions. Some of the clients had experiences not unlike the patient journey of “Mark” below.   (click to view enlarged image) Patient journey mapping is effective for plotting a patient’s experience in the health care system and identifying gaps in care. We focus on what happens 80% of the time to patients in similar situations in order to have as accurate an understanding as possible. The patient is always at the centre of the mapping process, with health professionals providing their perspectives in order to help clarify the map. Health professionals include everyone the patient has contact with: family physicians, pharmacists, intake admin, outreach workers, counsellors, etc. The map is created in real-time with the patient and health care providers in the room. The first iteration is often post-it notes, which are shifted around on the map until a clearer, sequential journey emerges. The completed map is central to future planning and elimination of gaps in care. It’s the catalyst for change and is reviewed regularly to ensure planning is aligned. Patient journey map in progress during a day-long session. Public Engagement/Inquiry After my time with the ACT teams I moved on to working in community health engagement and system-wide integration. This included on-going consultation with community health networks and examining the bigger picture of health care to identify major gaps or disconnects. Community consultation is essential in understanding how people are or are not being served by the health system, which requires an open and honest dialogue. Graphic recording helps create a safe environment to have these discussions – everyone feels their voice is heard when it’s captured in full view of the room. The graphics also translate complex diagnoses or health experiences into a visual summary that people are more likely to understand and connect with. This is especially important in reducing stigma and building new relationships to facilitate further open and honest discussions.   We are all patients of the health care system – it is important the community voice is central to how the health system can improve. Public Education Reducing the...

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Patient Journey Mapping

Posted by on Nov 17, 2012 in blog, Graphic Recording, Patient Journey Mapping

UPDATE: Check out my latest post on patient journey mapping work in health care! Many organizations get locked into one way of doing business and it never changes year to year, despite advances in technology or changes in customer needs. It’s important for an organization to map out their process of providing service to customers and identify any road blocks or bottlenecks along the way. This leads to improved efficiency and cost savings.   A fictional Patient Journey Map for COPD.   Journey mapping is used in a variety of industries, including healthcare. Patient Journey Mapping brings together physicians, health professionals, and patients for a day-long session of mapping the patient experience. The focus is the patient and plotting their healthcare path through diagnosis, treatment, discharge home, and back again. As the patient journey is mapped, gaps in care are identified and wait times highlighted.   Graphic recording the journey ensures clear communication, especially when dealing with highly complex processes and with many people providing input. Creating a visual map is crucial in maintaining the group’s focus in order to thoroughly map the journey. It’s also important that patients feel they can express their personal stories in a safe environment where their voice is being heard. Graphic recording helps ensure patients feel validated by seeing their words displayed clearly through images. Graphic recording also captures the tone of what’s being said (or not said!).   Once the mapping is complete, it’s easy to send the digital version of the map to other health professionals during the validation process to ensure nothing has been...

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