Rethinking Rapid Response
The work of rapid response teams in hospitals really is a matter of life and death. These teams deliver critical care when a patient’s health deteriorates, leaving little margin for error. So how do you improve this life-saving process to save more lives?
Visualization models were used to communicate important findings and articulate qualitative data while presenting crucial quantitative information. The model pictured above identified process breakdowns where there were design opportunities to improve the workflow through analysis and inquiry, technology or re-design.
Design Insights Drive Innovation
Electronic Ink's design researchers were embedded in a hospital's rapid response team to understand and document how the RRT prepares for a life-saving event and responds to emergencies. We observed the RRT in action and documented equipment use, communication and workflow in painstaking detail.
Just as the hospital hoped, we brought insights and innovations to this life-saving process. For example, we recommended a simple process for assigning clear roles in an emergency, reducing event time while freeing up staff resources. We reviewed patient transfer data and raised questions about the implications of patient traffic patterns. We also demonstrated how to simplify the reporting process by aggregating eight forms into one, significantly reducing the time spent on data entry. Using these recommendations and more, the hospital was able to take decisive actions to improve quality of care and efficiency.
An observation notebook was constructed to document the communication and workflow that takes place throughout an RRT event. Researchers used the notebooks to capture time, clarify interactions, and illustrate artifact usage and resource movement within the workplace.
Event Trend Composite
In addition to performing qualitative research, our designers also developed a composite of RRT event trends over the span of a year. We highlighted the moving average and multi-day events and analyzed the data by day of the week and time of year for additional insights.