During the COVID-19 pandemic, cardiologists try to minimize the risks for their patients by using telehealth to provide continuing care. Rapidly implementing video consultations (VCs) in outpatient clinics for heart patients can be challenging. We employed a design thinking (DT) tool, called a customer journey, to explore challenges and opportunities when using video communication software in the cardiology department of a regional hospital. Interviews were conducted with five patients with implanted devices, a nurse, an IT manager and two cardiologists. Three lessons were identified based on these challenges and opportunities. Attention should be given to the ease of use of the technology, the meeting features and the establishment of the connection between the cardiologist and the patient. Further, facilitating the role of an (virtual) assistant in video consultation software who can manage the telehealth process may improve the success of video consultations. Employing DT to implement VCs in cardiology and to further implement telehealth is crucial to build a resilient healthcare system that can cope with urgent needs beyond COVID-19.

Journal of Medical Internet Research
Health Services Management & Organisation (HSMO)

Vandekerckhove, P.B.M, Dr. Vandekerckhove, Y., Tavernier, R, De Jaegher, K., & de Mul, M. (2020). Leveraging user experience to improve video consultations in a cardiology practice: initial insights during COVID-19. Journal of Medical Internet Research. Retrieved from http://hdl.handle.net/1765/127657