Creating a patient centered culture needs a recognition that patients, their carers and communities are different from each other.
Action in this area requires a sophisticated understanding of the different attitudes, desires and characteristics of different patient segments.
That is why most customer facing industries recognize the importance of segmenting their population. Healthcare leaders recognize that having recognized the differences between segments of patients it is important that everyone from the leadership to clinical teams have goals that are aligned with creating high quality outcomes and experience for those segments of patients. Healthcare organizations will understand that that there will need to be continuous work to improve this.
The use of the narrative story of a typical patient to give this somewhat abstract idea some concrete meaning is an effective way to align different parts of the organization.
In many organizations, goals relate to the work of individuals or departments, not to the overall value streams that relate to the patient’s journey.
In Ryhow hospital an individual narrative around a patient Esther was used to mobilize change throughout the hospital. This has become so much a part of the whole story of the hospital that parts of the patient pathway are now named after her.