A major transformation has taken place in the way a family doctor’s office operates. In the recently released Canadian Medical Association's (CMA) Workforce Study, 85% of Canadian primary care physicians reported using electronic medical records, compared to 23% in 20061. Adopting these tools has been a major step forward for digital health, and yet, many pain points still exist:
- Information remains inaccessible
- Many tasks remain manual and tedious, and
- Patients still lack tools that enable them to play a larger and more meaningful role in their care
What would it take to create digital tools for the family doctor’s office that eliminate, rather than add to, these pain points?
Co-design actively engages people in each stage of the design and development of the new technology. At Mikata Health, we believe this people-centered approach is a game-changer for digital health for a number of reasons:
- Focus on the right problems: Observing and talking to users builds a rich understanding of their real needs, while also identifying behaviours and workflows to be accommodated.
- Develop the best solutions: Exploring a broad range of possible solutions and using quick, inexpensive concept testing pinpoints the right solution, rather than presupposing what it will be.
- Get ahead of change management: Involving users from the beginning fosters buy-in and makes adoption much more likely.
To date, we’ve established co-design partnerships with a number of clinics in Alberta. We’re developing an easy-to-use concierge tool that uses the power of artificial intelligence to give patients quick, convenient access to their care and information, while automating tedious tasks so doctors and staff can get back to focusing on care. We’re also partnering with a local citizen’s group to build a platform connecting digital health companies like ours with patients, doctors, and healthcare organizations who want to participate in co-design.
Canada Health Infoway’s mission to bring digital health innovation to Canadians is something we’re proud to be a part of as one of several Albertan startups sponsoring the 2017 Infoway Partnership Conference, Connecting for Digital Health, on November 14 and 15. We are participating in the session Embracing Disruption: The power of start-ups in digital health, November 15 at 11:20 – 11:50 AM.
1. Canadian Medical Association’s Workforce Survey, retrieved October 2017: https://www.cma.ca/En/Pages/physician-workforce-surveys.aspx