Reimagining the emergency department experience using design thinking and experience design.
OhioHealth was experiencing declining patient satisfaction scores within their emergency departments. While they had assumptions around the causes of the decline, they asked Cast & Hue to create an approach to identify the root causes of the decline and develop a scalable and sustainable plan to improve the ED patient experience.
By making customers a part of the journey mapping process, Cast & Hue enabled our emergency department staff to see their experience in a totally different light. The opportunities for improvement were truly unexpected, and we co-created a new service experience to impact those defining moments.- Katy Rigsby, System VP, Customer Insights at OhioHealth
OhioHealth posed a unique problem in that they were trying to align the experiences and alleviate problems at a number of their hospitals, from rural hospitals in Amish-country to large urban hubs.
Patient Experience Mapping workshops brought together patients, their friends and family members, and frontline ED staff to map the journey that patients and family members took through the Emergency Department. Through this process, the patient and friends/family members’ emotional journey was documented and opportunities for improvement were identified.
As an outcome of this work, six core problems were uncovered that existed across all patient journeys, providing a platform to jump off in a quest for creating a revamped experience for patients.
Following the experience mapping workshops, patients, their friends and family members, and front line ED staff were again brought together to begin ideating around new solutions. In these design thinking sessions, participants and facilitators worked together to build empathy around the problems they were experiencing while undergoing treatment. As a result, participants came up with more than 150 new ideas for how to improve care at OhioHealth, many of which were actually prototyped as part of the workshop.
With over 150 ideas generated during design thinking, the job of designing a new ED experience wasn’t over yet. Without a plan for implementation, ideas are simply that: unrealized ideas. Following the design thinking sessions, Cast & Hue worked with OhioHealth stakeholders to prioritize the ideas based on effort v. impact, followed by the development of an Experience Design Roadmap for implementing the new experience.
Over the course of 2016 and 2017, many of the ideas that were initially created as a direct result of patient and staff workshops were implemented. Based on the HCAHPS data ending in the August 2017 period, OhioHealth is already seeing large increases in patient satisfaction scores. Some highlights include:
As OhioHealth continues to implement and hone new ideas, we expect to continue to see significant increases in CAHPS scores, leading to increased Medicare reimbursement funding.