UPMC: Neurosurgery Clinic Experience

A Project done with UPMC and Carnegie Mellon University

This was a service design project to improve patient experience at a neurosurgery clinic at University of Pittsburgh Medical Center (UPMC).

This project captures the work of our team for the service design course that was offered at the School of Design’s graduate program, Carnegie Mellon University. Our team collaborated with UPMC’s Minimally Invasive endoVascular Neurosurgery Center (and clinic) and the Center for Quality Improvement & Innovation (now the Wolff Center at UPMC) from Fall of 2007 to Spring 2008.

A project report containing our design process was delivered to Dr. Amin Kassam’s (world-renown neurosurgeon who has perfected a minimally invasive brain tumor removal procedure) staff during an oral presentation along with a prototype of some artifact products. In addition, a vision for the future state of the clinic experience was created and shared with the clinic staff in the form of a videosketch.

I co-led the team and produced all the final concept sketches (hand drawn and digital), did the video production, led the service blueprint creation and visualization of emotional/information data of the experience, and captured important insights (video, photos) during research.

Work from this project has been featured in several places:

  • Our service blueprint from this project is featured as an exemplar in the 2020 article “Service Design for a Holistic Customer Experience: A Process Framework” in Management Science. It has been featured frequently in presentations and websites about service design (prior to the site’s revamp and content updates, it was one of the examples of service blueprinting at servicedesigntools.org).
  • The work of this project is featured as a chapter in This is Service Design Thinking, written by one of my teammates, Jamin Hegeman.
  • On May 13, 2008 – shortly after completion of this project – Jeff Howard, who blogs at “Design for Service” and who also now serves on the Editorial Board for the Journal, Touchpoint, interviewed Jamin and me about our team’s work. Full transcript of the interview can be read here: [link].