I’m currently just wrapping up a four-month work term at NexJ Systems Inc in Toronto. I’m a Product Manager co-op on the healthcare team. Essentially, we design enterprise software (software for hospitals, clinics, etc.) that helps both providers and patients better manage their health.
A project which I’ve taken strong interest to and have worked on at NexJ was recently released publicly, so I thought I’d share and simultaneously give some insight into why I think what I do is so awesome.
We’re currently working on implementing an electronic version of the Passport To Trust program. Passport To Trust is a tool developed by the Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center (a Harvard Medical School affiliate) aimed at encouraging patient-provider interaction and understanding, while lowering the barriers to health.
The philosophy of the program is simple: the provider structures and writes down the information that’s given to the patient according to a template that looks like this, and the patient can take that template home with them. Many people forget most of the information they’re told in a visit within a few minutes of leaving. By writing it down, patients retain and can refer to that information. Patients can also reflect upon it as they carry out their treatment, and bring new questions/insight back. It is astounding to see the impact which this simple process has had on a patient’s level of satisfaction with the level of care received.
Long story short, at NexJ we’re digitizing the process. It’s been very motivating working on a project with the potential to have such a profound impact on a patient’s quality of care.
Here links to the press release and another article written up about the project, which might help you get a better understanding of what we’re doing, if you’re interested:
So, what’s the ‘so what’? Have you ever felt dissatisfied with the level of information or explanation you received from a doctor’s visit? Ever left feeling a bit confused as to what you were diagnosed with, and you’re taking, and why you’re taking it? I have. First, understand that your dissatisfaction is real: I personally would just shrug it off as a personal issue or a fact of life. Not understanding your doctor’s visit is a pretty bad thing. Second, do your part to help change that. The Passport To Trust Template is a great way of structuring your visit, and organizes the information you have to cover and need to know, very well. Print one off, and use it as a reference for what info you need to communicate to your provider, and what information you expect to get back. Better yet, just print one, bring it with you, and fill it in as you go! Patient awareness, initiative, and demand for excellence will be major factors in redefining western healthcare systems. Help us take the first step.