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ePatients discuss the "healing process" of IDEO Design Challenge at Medicine X

ePatients discuss the "healing process" of IDEO Design Challenge at Medicine X

Stanford’s Medicine X conference closed yesterday with a presentation from ePatients who participated in the IDEO Design Challenge.

During the workshop, which was held last Friday at the IDEO headquarters in Palo Alto, ePatients got the opportunity to learn the company’s design process and collaborate with IDEO designers, researchers, technologists and health-care providers to develop new ideas for improving patient care.

Workshop participants were divided into five teams, and each team included an ePatient who has experience managing a chronic disease and who uses technology to help facilitate his or her own care. Each patient brought a statement problem, which was based on their chronic illness and application, for the team to address in working through the design-thinking process.

According to IDEO Partner Dennis Boyle, this was the first time the company had collaborated with patients as members of a design team.

Three of the ePatients – Nikolai Kirienko, Sarah Kucharski and Scope contributor M.A. Malone – took the stage alongside moderator Nick Dawson, a Medicine X board member and director of community engagement at Bon Secours Virginia Health System, on Sunday to discuss their experiences participating in the design challenge.

Kirienko described working with team members to create a participatory health record that would help ensure patients weren’t the last to know about a doctor’s orders. “The thing that struck me most about the workshop was that it was a very healing process,” he said. “Having spent thousands of hours in the hospital, it was an amazing experience to be able to think about those problems so that patients in the future wouldn’t have to encounter some of the same situations.”

Kucharski and her team set out to develop a Match.c0m-inspired website that would partner up patients with mentors and care coordinators based on shared emotional, social and other values, and Malone and her group designed a conceptual product they dubbed the “lift-o-stick,” which would assist individuals whose health conditions make it challenging to get up from a seated position.

“We are all wired to be creative, but we are often told ‘no’ from the get go,” said Malone. “During the workshop, that creativity was allowed to flourish and grow. In terms of healing, that was such a wonderful feeling to… feel again.”

The first-ever Medicine X conference was held at the School of Medicine’s Li Ka Shing Center for Learning and Knowledge and drew nearly 450 attendees from 30 countries. Many others participated in the event virtually through a high-quality streaming webcast.

Photo by StanfordMedX

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