Healthcare innovation is not just about ICT

Sep 16
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Implementation of software into healthcare environments is inherently difficult, and it’s not just about the ICT. Acknowledged pain points include poor clinician engagement, lack of a patient-centric view, misalignment with clinical and administrative workflows, lack of recognition of patient needs, inadequate visibility of clinical guideline requirements and poor integration with other IT systems.

Emerging visual patient journey modelling methodologies provide innovative opportunities to address these pain points ensuring the ‘human-side’ of IT changes are clearly understood and are used to inform care logistics/service transformation planning.

Key considerations include

  • How can a common understanding, and eventually consensus, be achieved across a diverse range of healthcare professionals?
  • How can we understand the patient/consumer experience of this care if it spans multiple providers and services?
  • What are the varying clinical workflows, supporting systems and guidelines that underpin the patient/consumer journey?

Patient Centred Service Transformation

The Essomenic Patient Journey Modelling (PJM) methodology is designed specifically for the health sector to articulate and visually represent the patient journey and experience, and was developed through extensive research into the precise needs of healthcare transformation and detailed interactions with quality improvement leaders. The Essomenic tool explores and captures dimensions critical to assessing service innovation opportunities; for example, clinical and administrative workflows, patient needs, evidence based clinical guidelines, complex multiple-path process flows, discontinuities of care and care handovers, along with comprehensive metrics. The quantitative results become powerful evidence in the rationale for change. The visual model improves understanding and engagement with all stakeholders, providing a common language for ongoing discussions across service silos and organisational structures.


  • Visual models are easily understood by all stakeholders
  • Fosters interdisciplinary communication
  • Improves understanding of complete system of care and the impact of changes
  • Increases stakeholder engagement: clinical, executive, administration
  • Provides an end-to-end view of the journey from the patient perspective
  • Empowers staff to take an active role in ongoing improvement activities
  • Works with any clinical stream and software systems/platforms.

Essomenic has been used in a variety of projects in Australia and overseas including:

Mental health, oncology, integrated care, outpatients, chronic disease management, maternity (metropolitan and remote indigenous), renal, neonatal intensive care, haematology, allied health, osteoarthritis, palliative care, community-based services, dementia and bariatric.

Transforming services to provide coordinated, collaborative, evidence based and multi-disciplinary care will continue to be a considerable challenge as emerging integrated care programs aim to meet increased demand and complexity. To achieve these goals, healthcare must be planned and delivered differently.

Criterion’s series of Health conferences cover topics including Patient Flow, Emergency Departments, Infection Prevention, Hospital Safety & Security and more. View upcoming events here.

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Submitted by Dr Jo Curry

Dr Jo Curry

Joanne is Adjunct Associate Professor, Deans Unit School of Computing, Engineering & Math, University of Western Sydney. She is a highly experienced Health Informatician who specialises in patient journey modelling. She has significant experience in managing healthcare improvement projects using various technologies and involving complex organisational cultures.

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