Design Principles for Supporting Patient-Centered Journeys

Maia Jacobs*, Elizabeth D. Mynatt

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

4 Scopus citations


As chronic illnesses become increasingly prevalent, greater responsibilities are placed on patients to manage their health while away from traditional health care settings. Personal health management tools help individuals with their health management, but often focus on isolated tasks or events. In contrast, chronic illnesses, including many types of cancer, are characterized by a broad range of needs as patients grapple with physical, emotional, and logistical challenges throughout care. Furthermore, these challenges change, as patients' needs and goals shift over time; thus these illnesses are better defined as a dynamic journey than a series of singular events.In this work, we assess how personal mobile technologies, integrated into a health care delivery system, may better support an individual's health care journey, using breast cancer as a case study. Our case study includes examining the practices of cancer navigators, characterizing how survivors describe their cancer journeys, and conducting a pilot study of tablet computers designed to offer holistic support to newly diagnosed breast cancer patients. Utilizing observations from this case study, we offer a set of design guidelines for supporting patients' personal health management while considering the broad range of challenges that comprise this work.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationDesigning Healthcare That Works
Subtitle of host publicationA Sociotechnical Approach
PublisherElsevier Inc
Number of pages20
ISBN (Electronic)9780128125847
ISBN (Print)9780128125830
StatePublished - Nov 13 2017
Externally publishedYes


  • Breast cancer
  • Cancer journey
  • Cancer navigation
  • Holistic cancer care
  • Mobile health
  • Personal health technology
  • Personalized health care

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Medicine


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