"Help us transform our health record into a modern next generation product."
- Innovation Lead at Telstra Health
A smarter, more intuitive, and mobile friendly electronic health record.
Each day, nursing and care staff in aged care facilities will look after 10 to 20 elderly people with a range of complex health conditions. They're constantly balancing jobs like "who needs their medication now, who needs assistance bathing and why is John Walker's blood pressure so high?". Electronic health records help them document and manage the care needs of each resident at their facility.
Telstra Health’s Clinical, Care and Medication Management software is used widely by aged care facilities around Australia. As a product, it had been growing rapidly for eight years, collecting new features along the way. To scale and attract larger international clients they needed to simplify the user experience, so we worked closely with their product team to modernise every part of it.
How could we improve the client experience?
We visited aged care facilities throughout Victoria and interviewed nurses, care workers and management to find out how we could help them become more efficient and provide better care.
Three things stood out:
- Resident information was scattered in different systems making it hard to get the full picture of a resident's care needs.
- Nursing and care staff needed to spend less time on documentation so they could get back to caring for their residents.
- There was an opportunity to help nursing and care staff understand which residents needed help urgently.
1. Creating one place for everything
Resident information lived in various places. A sticky note on the monitor reminded nursing and care staff to check Bob's weight today, paper diaries listed the check-ups that were due, and other important details lived temporarily in people's heads. This meant important tasks could easily be forgotten.
We designed an easy way for nursing and care staff to keep track of the things that need to be done for each resident. A shared task list was created so they could assign and monitor the progress of important check-ups and activities.
2. Making documentation easier
Nursing and care staff would queue at the workstation to write up their notes at the end of the day, often forgetting important details that happened hours earlier. We restructured how they completed charts and documentation, removing a number of steps and simplifying the process. A mobile friendly version of the software allowed them to add their notes at the bedside or throughout the day, freeing them from the nurse's workstation and ensuring important information was captured at the point of care.
3. Turning data into decisions
The system allows nursing and care staff to record an array of information about a resident's health, such as weight, blood pressure, liquid intake, etc. However, this important health information was buried in lists and tables.
To find out if Bob's blood pressure was too high, nursing and care staff would need to look through his results and compare them to his previous levels. Turning this information into alerts helped nursing and care staff identify the residents who need help right now. They can scan down the list of residents at any time and prioritise where to spend their time.
To help Telstra Health plan for the future we also created prototypes to show what their product could look like in two or three years’ time. With a more robust, intuitive product, Telstra Health are able to attract larger clients and provide a software solution that was user friendly and brought the most important information to the surface.
Note: When this work was completed Clinical, Care and Medication Management was owned by iCareHealth. In 2014 iCareHealth was acquired by Telstra Health.
“Version 4 of Clinical and Care Management software is very intuitive, easy to navigate, and has a modern and clean look which means staff feel much more comfortable using it.”
– Tershia Bunsee, Clinical Information Systems Manager
Further reading ...
If you're currently building an electronic health record you should read our 5 design principles for eHealth.