Patient Insight: Visualizing Patient Data Over Time to Improve Clinical Care

Patient Insight is a patient data visualization portal designed and developed by the Johns Hopkins Technology Innovation Center (TIC) to improve clinical care experience.

Clinicians use the Patient Insight application to observe patients’ health status over time and better understand their progress. Accessible through Epic, this tool also helps clinicians to better communicate with their patients.

Initially, the TIC was tasked by the Multiple Sclerosis Center of Excellence to build a tool to track disease progression and display patient history based on medications, MRI results, relapses, lab results, and patient-reported data.

Since the TIC uses a human-centered approach to design an application, the design team started with research and conducted interviews with clinicians to learn more about their needs and challenges.

With a better understanding of the requirements, the team began designing wireframes, followed by prototype testing with the help of clinicians from the Johns Hopkins Precision Medicine Centers of Excellence.

After testing and editing the prototypes based on the interview feedback, the TIC built and launched the web-based application.

Following Multiple Sclerosis, other centers such as Scleroderma and Myositis began using the Patient Insight application. Consequently, the TIC team made changes and added more features to cover new requests from these centers.

According to Dr. Ami Shah, Co-Director of the Johns Hopkins Scleroderma Center, “For us to understand trends in a patient’s trajectory across multiple organ systems is really challenging because all the data don’t reside in one place where it can be easily digested.”

A benefit of Patient Insight is not only seeing an individual patient’s data but seeing how a given patient compares to all the other patients in a cohort. Dr. Shah explained that scleroderma is a rare disease, but there are over 4000 patients in the scleroderma cohort.

“Now we can see how this patient compares to others, how do events co-occur in time, is there a way to harness the knowledge we’ve gained from seeing a lot of patients with a rare disease to improve our ability to predict where this individual patient is likely to go? What problems are they likely to experience? How can we monitor them better? Should we be intervening earlier?”
-Dr. Ami Shah

The TIC aims to leverage this solution based on new requirements and add features for existing and prospective users. The challenge is to find commonalities between requirements from various centers to design a more extensive and sustainable solution, while maintaining the consistency of the application.

The design and development teams at TIC continue improving the user experience while adding new features to the Patient Insight application.

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