Service Design Empowering Innovative Communities Within Healthcare

Applying Service Design Visualisation to Facilitate Collaborative Sense-Making and Shared Decision-Making in Hospitals
  • Stuart G. BaileyEmail author
  • Karen L. Bell
  • Hans Hartung


Service design provides the means to make sense of the complex interactions and processes experienced when delivering and receiving patient care. The tools of service design generate visual narratives that communicate experiences of and interactions between medical staff, hospital patients and carers, as well as mapping processes and systems and identifying the nature of relationships between the various stakeholders involved. Often service design tools are used to communicate what was observed and what might be done, but when used as analytical and diagnostic tools, they deliver a powerful means of sharing thinking and decision-making across a wider community beyond the designers themselves. The authors discuss the application of human-centric service design, not only as the means to design innovative service outcomes but to analyse and diagnose the complex processes involved in delivering patient care. The utilisation of this multifaceted design process resulted in richer service prognosis and propositions in concordance with the needs of patients, carers, hospital staff and clinicians than often provided by the more routine qualitative or quantitative analysis of service delivery. Using case studies of projects undertaken at University Hospital Crosshouse to illustrate our findings, this chapter explores the issues encountered during the application of service design and service thinking by clinical and non-clinical professionals, including the lessons learned in developing sustainable innovation practices that reduced reliance on the presence of designers. We highlight the dynamics of this approach, looking through the lens of person-centred service design and open innovation, how staff and service users engaged in exploring new insights and approaches.



The authors would like to acknowledge and thank everyone that was involved in making these projects a success; in particular, the staff and patients at NHS Ayrshire and Arran, and the students and staff of the product design department at Glasgow School of Art. Also, NHS Lothian for their involvement in ongoing collaborations with NHS Ayrshire and Arran and Glasgow School of Art.


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Stuart G. Bailey
    • 1
    Email author
  • Karen L. Bell
    • 2
  • Hans Hartung
    • 3
  1. 1.The Glasgow School of ArtGlasgow, ScotlandUK
  2. 2.Research & Development and Innovation ChampionNHS Ayrshire & Arran, University Hospital CrosshouseKilmarnock, ScotlandUK
  3. 3.Respiratory MedicineNHS Ayrshire & Arran, University Hospital CrosshouseKilmarnock, ScotlandUK

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