PROCUREMENT DECISION SUPPORT
healthcare-human-factors-blue-divider

Creating a proactive culture of safety

healthcare-human-factors-blue-divider

Share on

healthcare-human-factors-blue-divider
Need

When we care for our patients, technology supports caregivers and patients alike, helping us carry out healthcare activities and make decisions. Technology can be a positive force in the care experience; but sometimes it can also cause headaches when the technology fails or is a mismatch with an organization’s processes.

With new technologies being innovated everyday, healthcare organizations can tap into this wealth of technology to improve care. Picking the right technology to implement, however, is a challenge that all healthcare organizations face. Purchasing a new medical device or health information product is a major financial investment and a long-term commitment with impact that could last for decades.

How does a technology impact patient safety? Operational efficiency? Staff experience? How does it shape existing workflows? How can the hospital negotiate with the manufacturer on identified issues? By analyzing and testing the technology prior to purchase, healthcare organizations can make an evidence-based decision and create a proactive culture of safety.

healthcare-human-factors-blue-divider
Our Service

Healthcare Human Factors assist hospitals and healthcare organizations in the procurement process and help them make the best decision. For UHN, which operates four hospitals in Toronto, the results of our testing account for 30% of the final selection decision.

Our main objectives in procurement are to

  1. provide objective evidence for the safety, efficiency, and usability of the products
  2. ensure best fit to the needs of the specific users and health care environment
  3. inform the implementation and training strategies.

Our methodology is to engage front-line staff in procurement through comparative testing to uncover usability and workflow-related issues that can influence safety and efficiency.

Through comparative high-fidelity usability testing of multiple competitor products, we can identify the most usable product that presents the least risk for successful integration into current workflows and environments. From our results, we provide a three-tiered analysis that ranks issues from moderate, serious, to critical, and calculate a final usability score based on number and severity of usability issues with safety implications, followed by task completion data and subjective user feedback.

healthcare-human-factors-blue-divider
Impact

The benefits of a human factors evaluation is multi-faceted. Not only does a human factors evaluation reveal the most suitable product, but it also allows the healthcare organization to negotiate for usability improvements with the vendor and reduce the product use safety risk from the outset. In addition, usability issues identified can inform and help craft the best implementation strategies and training so that remaining risks can be mitigated.

In our experience, clinicians and biomedical engineering staff actively participate in these procurement evaluations, and appreciate the opportunity to directly experience the products and contribute to purchasing decisions within their hospitals. We are proud to be active partners in procurement, helping create a proactive safety culture that puts users first in healthcare organizations.

healthcare-human-factors-blue-divider

Share on