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CommuniCare is a healthcare service/systems design project aims to increase the uptake of community care services of breast cancer supportive and survivorship care by providing holistic patient experience and touchpoints of transition and referral service system through empathic and human-centred design interventions from the National Cancer Centre Singapore (NCCS) to the community services for breast cancer survivors (BCS) ongoing primary and post-treatment.

CommuniCare

 

CommuniCare was initiated and conducted during the shift in Singapore's public health sector of survivorship and supportive care provision from a tertiary-care centric model to a shared care model. The shift was started in the NCCS, where 2/3 of cancer treatments are located including various pilot programs.

 

I had the pleasure and chance as the project lead, along with the small teams of health clinicians, BCS and interior designers, we had the opportunity to introduce a holistic service system, providing a sense of support in each touchpoints of referral and transit in NCCS to community services, Interventions aim to engage, empower and enable BCS throughout each journey, increase self-efficacy be active in their care journey and increase the motivation and drive to uptake the essential care services in their community.

ROLE

Service/Systems design, UX research, UX strategy, UI Design, Spatial design, Academic Research, Publciaiton design.

PROJECT CREDITS

National Cancer Centre of Singapore (NCCS) Supportive and Palliative care Oncologists & Nurses, Corporate Communications team and Interior Designers.

COMPANY 

National Cancer Centre of Singapore (NCCS)
2021

AWARDS & RECOGNITIONS

Orchard X Cineleisure Exhibition
Faculty of Design best of 2021

 

LASALLE Creative Entrepreneurial Challenge 2021
Runner-up winner

The LASALLE Show 2021

Top 8 Research Project Features
 

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Screen Shot 2021-11-06 at 16.23.02.png

Project Background
 

With the advancement of care treatments and improved cure rates, the BCS population is anticipated to increase over the next few decades with no signs of abating. For BCS, they are not entirely cured even with full remission. They face various of psychosocial and physical concerns. A few includes anxiety, fear, self-esteem and outlook on life. Therefore supportive and survivorship care is highly important and beneficial. Such care provision has been planned to be in a shared-care model incorporating more of the primary are sector and community partners. This shift it will begin in NCCS. 

statistics 

Prior to the initaitona nd execution of this project, an academic research was conducted which paper I embarked on at the end of 2020 investigated the gaps in the socio-culutral related contributors to the  health-seeking behaviours and communication barriers of BCS in respect to the current provision of survivorship care in Signapore's public health sector and their health clinicians. Whic found to impede on the shared care model shift. The paper discovered the underlying contirbutors and the root cause of the problem -the flaw in the system in boh the front end and the back end in designing for a breast cancer survivorship care. which lead to the collaboration with the National Cancer Centre of Signapore (NCCS) and therefore the birth of project CommuniCare.

The "Problem"
 

Survivorship and supportive care is important for Breast Cancer Survivors (BCS) facing psychosocial and physical concerns in their recovery journey. The NCCS has been conducting various upskilling efforts and partnerships with the community partners in preparing for the shared care model shift to provide this care.

 

However, in Singapore’s multi-cultural context, various socio-cultural factors influence negatively on how BCS communicate and participate in their care and their health-seeking behaviour. and compliance to recommended care. With the current fragmented and lack of empathic service system in both the frontstage and backstage of the transition and referral process from the NCCS to the community care, the huge shift is at a high risk of low number of uptakes from BCS. 

Where
CommuniCare
Stands

 

CommuniCare aims to increase the uptake of community care services of breast cancer supportive care by providing holistic patient experience and touch- points of transition and referral process through empathic and human-centered design interventions from the NCCS to the community care for BCS ongoing primary and post-treatment. 

 

By introducing a holistic service system, providing a sense of support in each touchpoint of referral and transit in NCCS to community services, Interventions aim to engage, empower and enable BCS throughout each journey, increase self-efficacy be active in their care journey and increase the motivation and drive to uptake the essential care services in their community.

Understaidnin the  fragmented at the backed and the flaw in the current approach of designing a healthcare service program for the survivors, communicate also introduce the approaches of;

Circle circle

Project Pathways
& Approach

 

CommuniCare. dopts a project pathways that includes
Research & Investigation > Collaborative Problem-Solving > Comparison & Testings > Solution > Prototype > Testings > Execution

Throughout the design ideation and process, the following stakeholder groups are actively involved in providing in-depth discussion and ideas. Insights were generated by reviewing existing research and supplementing it with targeted user research.

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Prior to CommuniCare initiation of collaborative nature, It was found that there is a tremendous lack of BCS and no service designer involved or present in the process of a healthcare service design in NCCS. This is similarly the case for some other tertiary care in Singapore. Most of the parties involved are the clinicians themselves, the corporate communication and if digital or printed forms of visual communication are needed, it would be with external parties. Therefore, the feedback process is very staggered and distant. CommuniCare sees this opportunity to look into these gaps and approach the collaborative nature of work, ideating with the nurses, the oncologist and the involvement of BCS at the start, mid and end of the project. This allows discovering the gaps of the current system and touchpoints through looking at patients behavior, motivations and preferences which provide a holistic understanding of the lives of BCS directly. In turn, these formed the foundation for ideating and prototyping design concepts.

The
Research Scope 

Research 
Methods

Breast Cancer survivorship journey and care is a multidimensional and multidisciplinary area beyond the medical field. BCS behaviours and preferences are influenced by various factors. The research was conducted in two phases. Phase 1 focused on understanding the BCS and their behaviours by investigating the contributors of the underlying socio-culutural and the Singapore's survivorship care systems'. While Phase 2 focuses into the current practice in ht backstage and frontstafe of survirship care referral system in NCCS that involves the following


(1) To find out patinet's’ goal and pain points with, (2) To research and propose an improved patient journey flow, (3) To identify each aforementioned insights and identify the touchpoints to design a empathic and human-centered touchpoints/ "solutions" along with the involved stakeholders, (4) To provide a new holistic systems and blueprint that would engage empower BCS in the front end and have a strategic human-centered for the back end stakeholders and implemeters

Both phases relies on qualitative and quantitiative research that includes in-depth and experts interviews, case studies and rounds of user testings. In approaching BCS where their care journey is a sensitive topic to be discussed, the interviews and sure testings are conducted in a non-formal bases of conversation and . Conversation and affinity mapping was done to syntehsise the research findings.

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The terms BCS and Survivors perceived differently in various settings. NCCS define the term as “anyone who lives with cancer” and targets all BCS who are is able physically to visit the community services. To provide a better understanding of BCS individuals and preferences, CommuniCare will solely focus on BCS who are in their current and post treatment phases. Each BCS are unique individuals themselves, the following are the four classification of the targeted BCS groups that we will design the service and systems for. Pseudonyms of the BCS were used in these personas. 

The Breats cancer Surviros "Personas"

Research
Analyses

 

The Breats cancer Surviros "Personas"

Contributors