IQUE - A queuing application for healthcare personnel: For a more efficient workflow at the Emergency ward & Obstetrics and Gynaecology department of Östra Hospital
Examensarbete för masterexamen
Industrial design engineering (MPDES), MSc
As the need for healthcare increases, the pressure on the healthcare organization is constantly growing. Today, Swedish healthcare lacks resources, and the implementation of digital health information services is considered slow compared to other industries. Currently, analogue ways of working are still used, and digitalization within several areas could facilitate the healthcare personnel in their work. This Master’s Thesis aims to investigate if the workflow at the Emergency ward, and the Obstetrics and Gynaecology department of Östra Hospital, can be improved with digitalization of the current systems. Specifically, looking at the internal queueing systems related to consultation at the Emergency ward, and the orders of anaesthesia at the Obstetrics and Gynaecology department. The user groups focused on are the doctors and consultants at the Emergency ward, as well as the midwives and anaesthesiologists at the Obstetrics and Gynaecology department. Further, the goal is to improve efficiency, cooperation and communication as well as free up resources. In order to investigate the aim, four main phases have been carried out. In the first phase, the current systems and problem areas have been examined, by performing user studies at Östra Hospital, as well as sending out surveys to additional hospitals. The studies contributed to an understanding of the user needs and resulted in a requirement specification. The second phase included concept development, where ideation, brainstorming and iteration resulted in four concepts for each department. The concepts were tweaked and prototyped in the software Figma. The third phase included evaluation with the users, using the prototypes, together with a theoretical evaluation. The insights were analysed, and the final concept was developed, in the fourth phase. From the user studies, it could be seen that the majority of the participants were pleased with the current systems of today. However, several of the participants in the Emergency ward were positive about trying something new. At the Obstetrics and Gynaecology ward, the midwives believed the phone communication with the anaesthesiologists was crucial. Due to this, they did not believe digitalization of the system was necessary. However, the majority of the anaesthesiologists believed a digitalized system would make the process more efficient as well as patient safe. The final outcome of the project is a queueing application called IQUE. It provides support and an overview of the queue for the consultants and anaesthesiologists, enabling the doctors to keep working while still being positioned in the queue, and provides transparency for the midwives of the Maternity wards. To conclude, IQUE is a digital tool that might help healthcare personnel to perform their work more efficiently. However, the solution needs to be further tested by the users in the real user environment.
: healthcare, digitalization, user experience, digital design, the design process, user studies, prototyping.