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Key Details in Planning Your Shadowing Experience

Posted on August 9, 2016

Shadowing experiences are all tied directly back to the patient and family journey. Each step in the journey from the parking lot to the discharge process should be considered in advance to plan your shadow experience.

When you are setting up your Care Experience on the GoShadow platform, it’s important to have an idea as to why you are Shadowing and what your goals for the experience are before you begin. Most commonly, you will work through these three key steps while setting up the Care Experience.

Identify the scope of the Care Experience

A Care Experience is defined by a beginning point and an ending point. Will your Care Experience be taking place over multiple days or can it be shadowed within one afternoon? Will there be a need for multiple shadowers because your patient and family will diverge on different paths a will both need to be followed?

Understand the reasoning behind why the Shadowing was requested

What is the process your team is looking to improve and what do you hope to learn during the Shadowing? Be mindful of the opportunities for improve that appear during the Care Experience.

Can you map the flow of what you think the Care Experience is currently for the patients?

Who are the Care Givers and Touchpoints within the Care Experience? Mapping out what you believe will be the patient’s journey will be extremely helpful when Shadowing. Additionally, it will allow you to identify the gaps between what is expected and what is reality.

As a brief example, if the shadower transitions from being patient focused to temporarily focusing only on the family during the patient’s surgery, these items are important to observe as they dramatically affect a family member’s experience.

  • Waiting Rooms
  • Routine Family Updates
  • Signage
  • Accommodations

In all, when connecting with the Shadowing subject, explain that your role as a Shadower is to observe, record, and evaluate their experiences so that improvements can be made for future patients and their families. If you have not already viewed the GoShadow Shadowing Guide, it provides a great amount of detail into Shadowing experiences.
After your team has implemented process improvements for the completed Care Experience, it’s important to re-shadow the experience to see the impact. When you re-shadow you may use another shadower to generate another new perspective. This contributes greatly to the process improvement cycle.


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