Streamlining the private healthcare referral process

The Challenge

With access to thousands of private medical specialists in the UK, leading private healthcare provider, HCA Healthcare UK wanted to create an efficient, easy to use web application to help NHS doctors discover and refer their patients to the most appropriate private healthcare practitioner. Part of the brief was to redefine and improve the existing process of finding a consultant finding through a third party search platform. Analysis of this existing process found many searches were not resulting in successful referrals, and additional user insights provided evidence that the process was often considered cumbersome by both doctor and patient, frequently leading to abandonment, or manual intervention and completion. The new HCA Referrer web app needed to simplify the referral journey for doctors and patients, deliver additional value to their consultants through increased referral completions, increase patient visibility and maintain patient confidentiality.

Our Role

With a clear focus on helping HCA UK to digitally transform their existing consultant referral process we ran a Discovery phase to gain knowledge and understanding of existing user journeys and pain points in depth, as well as external procedures, that needed to be followed and adhered to. The two identified user roles, the GP and the Patient, needed to interact with each other to achieve the same goal, a digital referral, but each requiring their own personalised experience through different user flows and regulatory requirements. Together with the client, we rapidly iterated through wireframes in a series of design sprints that lead to the development of a set of high fidelity user-centred designs and a components library, leveraging existing brand guidelines. The initial product MVP was launched and tested with a small group of users this was followed by continued product development and testing before launch.

The Outcome

Within eight weeks ASquared created the initial release of the HCA Referrer web app enabling GPs to make instant digital referrals, improving the experience for all parties, whilst adhering to the regulatory frameworks. The HCA Referrer follows an easy to use, step-by-step process that guides the user by asking a series of questions, to discover the most suitable HCA Healthcare UK consultants aligned with the patient’s insurance company and medical need. Transforming the overall process and removing the need for physical letters being exchanged between GPs, consultants and patients has improved the speed, accuracy and efficiency of the service.
Through secure emails and an innovative use of QR-Codes the application facilitates simple and confidential collaboration and sharing between patient, doctor and consultant, resulting in a fully digital referral.

It goes without saying that Nick and the team did an excellent job and the final product is testament to ASquared’s expertise taking what was a complicated brief and producing something slick, simple and easy to use for healthcare professional and patient alike. Their weekly iterative approach gave HCA the flexibility we needed allowing us to continually test throughout development fine tuning the product as we went ensuring the MVP was a success.
Matthew Ward, HCA UK

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