Healthier Thursday is a weekly health check service for the elderly to detect whether the user has initial symptoms. The service contributes to prevent the disease as the prevention is always better than cure. There will be a one special till at the supermarket chain for the service on Thursdays. A trained cashier asks some questions to the user which determines whether the user has possible initial symptoms. And the cashier puts an information on the till and sends it to local Health Centre. The information will be analyzed in the centre whether there is anything to be looked at. Health centre posts a monthly paper report to the user. It says about whether the user needs to see doctor or participate health related programs to improve their health.
The user can pay a visit to a clinic before serious symptoms occur. This is how the Healthier Thursday service contributes to the healthier life.
The problem : Unfairness of health outcome
London has faced comparable challenges and struggled to deal with the inequality of health. Just a few kilometers adds and subtracts years of life expectancy. For instance, only 17 tube stops, a 32 minute journey divide Bromley by Bow from South Kensington on the District line. However there is a 17.2 year drop in life expectancy between these neighborhoods even though the U.K has an accessible public health system which is open to everyone regardless of wealth. According to the NHS, a General Practitioner sees 40 patients a day. Even everything is running smoothly and GP sees patients continuously from 8.30 to 6.30, s/he has 12 minutes per patient while there are period of waiting time, average an hour. This inevitable waiting time and a situation that the user must book consultation couple of days before discourage many elderlies from going to the health center with minor symptoms even there is something to be looked at.
Many cities in the world face similar problems. In some countries, the cost of seeing doctor for discourages people from going to the clinic to see a doctor and it results the unfair health outcome.
Challenge the problem by introducing Healthier Thursday service
To challenge the problems, I shall start with ideas that prevention is always better than cure and keeping a record helps in accurate diagnosis. In this sense, detecting early symptoms and keeping data can greatly improve the healthier life.
There will be a one special till for the service on Thursdays. While checking items out, trained cashier asks some questions to the user which can determine whether the user has possible initial symptoms. A trained cashier puts an information on the till and sends it to the Health Centre.
Information is analyzed in the health centre to see there is anything to be looked at. Health centre posts a monthly paper report to the user which says about whether the user needs to see doctor or participate some health related programs to improve their health.
Health centre will also leave a message for the user. The user can pay a visit to a clinic or a health centre before the serious symptom occurs. This is how the Healthier Thursday contributes to improve the healthier life of senior citizens.
What makes the Healthier Thursday service special?
Needless to say, major reason which makes Healthier Thursday service is novel and unique is that the service significantly contributes to the healthier life of the senior citizens. It contributes to close the gap of the unfairness of health outcome and life expectancy. Plus, the service can reach to the user who is inexperienced with digital technology as generally speaking, the elderlies are inexperienced with digital and web based service like using smartphones or apps to get benefit from a service. The other thing which makes the Healthier Thursday service really practical is a place where the service happens as the user goes to the supermarket anyhow in their everyday life. And the service does not require to hire number of doctors, nurses or health assistances. It uses the asset which already exists. And all of the stakeholder of the Healthier Thursday can get benefit from the service. In sense of the service provider, A supermarket chain can greatly improve their brand value and brand image in competitive market beyond just selling healthy food and being green as they actually contribute to improve the health of the user who is also a customer of the supermarket. Supermarket chain also can have regular customers. Another service provider which is Health organization, they do not need to invest large amount of money to set a service or hire someone while taking care of the users. All of these facts make the Healthier Thursday service very novel, unique and practical in a same way.
This is a very creative solution to a real problem
This project should inspire others to find opportunities in cross sector service design.
It is a great example of how two ecosystems can combine to create a great service experience; the ecosystem of healthcare and the ecosystem of retail.