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Health Design Lab Collaboration with Vancouver Coastal Health

Posted on August 28, 2017 | Emily Carr News

Visitors to Vancouver Coastal Health (VCH) facilities throughout the province will see the outcome of another successful collaboration with the University's Health Design Lab (HDL): the new hand hygiene campaign.

During the 2016/17 school year, VCH, led by their Quality and Patient Safety Team and VCH’s Director of Innovation and Evaluation, asked HDL to refresh their previous communication strategy (also an HDL collaboration).

Elevator wraps from the new campaign are currently installed at VGH, Richmond Hospital, Lions Gate Hospital and UBC. "Stop" signs and posters are in place at all local VCH acute care and LTC facilities. The campaign has also made its way up to Sechelt and Powell River!

 “We are so happy with [the campaign] and have been receiving lots of positive feedback.” Allison Muniak, Interim Executive Director, Quality and Patient Safety and Infection Control at Vancouver Coastal Health

The Hand Hygiene project focused on the development of new communication materials for public entrances and 
care areas in Vancouver Coastal Health hospitals to encourage long-term hand hygiene compliance amongst patients, visitors and staff. The project was embedded within a 3rd year communication design course: Design for Social Change, taught by Jon Hannan over the fall semester.

In October 2017, students facilitated a series of co-creation workshops at Vancouver General Hospital. Interviews with staff and hand hygiene experts
were combined with a series of short hands-on activities to help foster an understanding of the participants’ needs and expectations of hand hygiene, which helped students gain a better insight into the reality of a hospital environment. In total, approximately 24 participants engaged in a series of creative activities which generated conversation among participants and provided valuable insights and inspiration to the design students. Some activities were directed to better understand the dynamics of hand hygiene from the perspective of patients and
visitors, while others focused on the point
of view of hospital staff.

Students from the course pitched their design concepts to a panel from VCH for feedback. This included members from the Community Engagement Advisory Network (CEAN), to provide a patient/public perspective. 

Providing her feedback on the process to VCH, CEAN member Ella Rafii writes:

“7 groups of students were given the opportunity to work on the campaign by incorporating the aims of the project into their designs and presenting them to us for evaluation in the presence of their course instructor [& HDL Director Caylee Raber]. I found their presentations to be superb. In addition, their designs were unique, modern and to the point.”

The panel chose the” Clean Hands Warm Hearts” concept designed by Emily Carr students Chelsea Bell Eady, Stephanie Yen & Sabaah Moffedi for implementation throughout their facilities. The panel felt this campaign effectively conveyed the message and importance of
hand hygiene in a sympathetic and encouraging tone, with compelling, inclusive, and universal imagery - easily understood by all.

Writes Rafii: “Through the final campaign, the importance of hand hygiene in preventing illnesses [is] simply and effectively … displayed for everyone to see and hopefully followed by each individual whether giving or receiving healthcare. “