The Patient Centered Value System: An Upgrade for Healthcare - Part 1 Shadowing and WMTY

It’s no secret the current healthcare industry is flawed, centered around profit channeled through a pragmatic and uncoordinated care delivery system. A system where patients are ultimately vulnerable and susceptible to falling into gaps of care. Aware of these issues and growing symptoms of an antiquated system, the industry has been fervently searching for a new “Operating System.” The Patient-Centered Value System (PCVS) is one proposed system that uses the patient’s voice and autonomy as the center of all care decisions. Dr. DiGioia, the co-author of The Patient-Centered Value System: Transforming Healthcare Through Co-Design and co-founder of goShadow, walks through the new OS himself on the RelentlessHealthcare Podcast.

The goal of PCVS is to drive care decisions in healthcare through patients and their individual and collective experiences. There are numerous ways to work towards the ideal patient experience, including shadowing and tracing patients at each care touchpoint to a flow map; comparing current patient journeys to the ideal patient journey; devising & implementing action plans as well as coaching staff to have meaningful conversations with patients through conversation tools like “What Matters to You” (WMTY).

Tools to Support the New OS: What Matters to You? + Shadowing

According to Dr. DiGioia, the challenge but also the most important asset of this new OS is being able to view all care through the eyes of the patients and their families. What this accomplishes is it allows providers to view care through another perspective opening up avenues to co-design individualized treatment plans for every patient’s unique needs. One of the key ways we can do that is to shadow patients throughout their journey and to map out each care touchpoint. The goal is to identify what the actual overall flow of care looks like and the interactions between providers and patients, through the eyes of the patient. By repeatedly shadowing patients, we begin to create an overall narrative for what the average patient will experience and identify areas for improvement in the process that we would otherwise miss through traditional quantitative data analysis. For example, if patients regularly spend over 45 minutes in the waiting room, identify what is causing that wait time through shadowing and identify what changes could be made to make that long wait more comfortable. 

Collection and analysis of qualitative information allows anyone to understand why a process or experience occurs the way that it does and how to fix it from those who are stakeholders in that experience. Asking WMTY and other action-oriented, open-ended questions creates space for a deeply personal engagement with patients and their family members. Rather than asking “What is the Matter with You”, “What Matters to You” gives patients an opportunity to reveal their interests, values, and preferences as people, not just care recipients. Even non-clinical answers can also give a foothold for leaders to start looking into redesigning the system and address problems large and small. In short, WMTY encapsulates the essence of patient-centered care and shared-decision making. 

If you’re interested in learning more or want to install the Patient Centered Value System in your organization check out goShadow’s toolkits for shadowing and how you can ask “What Matters to You.” Also listen to Dr. Digoia, as he goes into depth about the importance of shadowing (12:30 of the podcast) and WMTY/co-design (16:36). Stay tuned for our blog post next week, where we dive into Part 2 of The Patient Centered Value System: An Upgrade for Healthcare - Co-Design/Team Building and Shared Decision Making.

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Posted on

September 10, 2021