Designing Leadership: The Voice of “Experience” in Healthcare

Peter Jones Design for Care, Design for Practice

(This piece is concurrently posted at the first Healthcare Experience Design conference site, where I’ll be speaking April 11.) Patients are not users, and people are not (yet)  patients until under a doctor’s care. Where does the user experience of health actually live? Healthcare is systemic at every level of observation, and traditional user-centered design will tend to under-scope that system’s complexity. As with an emergency physician treating a cardiac arrest, but having to ignore multiple chronic diseases causing the attack, user-centered design is unsuited (by method) to fix what ails the system. Design teams will treat symptoms but fail to resolve root causes of systemic health and care problems. We are faced with a double difficulty – of learning the language of healthcare and medicine and then to intervene. Designers must enlarge their methods toolbox and vocabularies to enable a more powerful range of options in systems and services design. Being able to carefully distance from the medical frame, designers can start making a difference by considering creative connections inaccessible within the patient and service model. Designing for the …

Evidence Based Experience Design

Peter Jones Design for Care, Design for Practice, Service Design

Architecture, interior design and clinical devices have adopted evidence-based design (EBD) and these fields actively contribute to its development through major projects, journal articles, and conferences. Evidence based design is a rigorous design equivalent to the careful application of scholarly evidence in informing care decisions. It is a healthcare term of art and has meaning in that sector.  It is not the gathering of user data as research “evidence” to inform design decisions in digital design.  EBD generally involves: Reviewing current and retrospective research literatures to identify precedents, mature findings, and prescriptive guidance from relevant studies. Prioritizing and balancing the literature basis with primary data collected from actual patient data, subject matter experts, and professional observations. Advancing theories and hypotheses to support observations and structuring evaluations to test outcomes of design decisions (e.g. architecture, facility design, wayfinding, room design). Measuring outcomes following implementation and assessing theory validity and any gap between observations and hypotheses. How are other design disciplines positioned with respect to evidence? Does it make sense for UX and experience design to adopt evidence-based principles, especially in healthcare? …

Critiquing the Critics of Peer-Review

Peter Jones Design for Practice, Information Ecology

I wonder why scientists, who require significant levels of validation in work in their own disciplines, make rather un-scientific analyses about scientific practices. In this case, paper publishing and peer review. Peer review, the blind circulation of research manuscripts among a community of reviewers for assessing editorial and content fit to a journal topic, has been breaking down for some time. There are many reasons why this is the case, including work intensification, increasing scientific specialization, and increasing number of journals. Yes these root cause factors are rarely, if ever, addressed by the proponents of “new” solutions to peer review or scientific publication.  These calls for change have been raised frequently recently. Of course “everyone” knows peer review is broken, a situation especially apparent when you’re at the receiving end of poor review practices. However, scientific reasoning is often tossed out in the pursuit of answers, the typical trap of problem solving without clearly understanding the problem system. In the same (current) issue of The Scientist that argues for ending peer review as we know it, some scientists (usually in …