Currently submitted to: JMIR Human Factors
Date Submitted: Feb 26, 2020
Open Peer Review Period: Feb 26, 2020 - Apr 26, 2020
(currently open for review)
Applying a Human Centered Design to develop a patient prioritization tool for a pediatric emergency department
Overcrowding in the emergency departments has become an increasingly significant problem. Patient triage strategies are acknowledged to help clinicians manage patient flow and reduce patients’ waiting time. Yet, electronic patient triage systems are not developed so that they comply with clinicians’ work’s habits.
This case study presents the development of a patient prioritization tool (PPT) and of the related patient prioritization algorithm (PPA) for a pediatric emergency department (PED) relying on a human-centered design process.
We followed a human-centered design process: (i) we performed a work system analysis through observations and interviews in an academic hospital’s PED; (ii) design specifications were deduced; (iii) we designed a PPT and the related PPA; and (iv) we performed user testing to validate the tool suits clinicians’ habits of works.
We developed mockups of the PPT along with the PPA. The mock PPT gives the status of patients progressing through the PED in an intuitive and immediately understandable way along with an overview of all the patients in the PED. The PPA can automatically be fed with data from a patient management software, calculate the status of each patient in real-time, and moves them through the PPT interface, thus showing the patients’ suggested level of priority.
This case study showed the value of integrating human factors into the design process for a PPT for PED. A PPT complying with the work habits of the clinicians is more likely to be accepted and used and may contribute to help reduce overcrowding in PED.
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