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TU Delft and Reinier de Graaf Gasthuis have joined forces and established the Health Journeys Lab to collaboratively explore and shape multidimensional care processes by:

1) Developing and facilitating the use of health technologies at the right time and in the right place in health journey.

2) Integrating process solutions around the patient for the best human interactions and healthcare management.

3) Adopting and implementing process thinking and working in the healthcare ecosystem to sustainably connect the different perspectives and users within and between organizations.


The collaboration between the faculty of IDE and RdGG is strongly based on addressing the challenges experienced in practice. Co-creation with patients, healthcare providers, and other relevant stakeholders from the organization is embedded in the design process, resulting in solutions that are aligned with the users’ needs and their context. Recent research has led to the design of a digital journey map tool called ‘GoMedFlow’. This tool has been co-created with and for care professionals and organizational employees, helping them to better comprehend care and digitalization processes by offering an overview, knowledge, and easy communication. It utilizes journey mapping as a facilitator by means of process mapping at different levels within an organization and by creating a common language for the transformation of healthcare. The impact of this successful project has led us to collaborate with the Ministry of Health, Welfare, and Sport (VWS) to explore the concept of ‘multidimensional care processes,’ where, apart from the horizontal connection (transmural care), the ambition is to design the vertical connection of the various dimensions of patient care (see Fig. 1).


The transformation of healthcare faces different challenges at various levels within the healthcare ecosystem:

Health Policy Level: There is a lack of connection and understanding of care at the operational and organizational levels, which hinders the ability to shape, implement, and scale up the transformation of healthcare according to the objectives of the IZA* and WEGIZ*.

* IZA – Integraal Zorg Akkoord and WEGIZ – Wet elektronische gegevensuitwisseling in de zorg

Hospital Organizational Level: A culture shift is needed to accelerate transformation, requiring strategic, operational, and behavioral changes. Organizations lack an overview and a blueprint for the design, implementation, and management of healthcare transformation.

Personal Patient-Doctor Level: Healthcare providers have limited time, availability, and knowledge about the possibilities for healthcare transformation and are not necessarily inclined to innovate. Existing solutions do not fit well into healthcare processes, resulting in resistance to using these tools in daily practice. Patients often have to recount their stories multiple times because relevant patient records are difficult to share with other healthcare providers.

Overall, there is a lack of overview and connection of technical innovations in healthcare processes, and there is a need for a “compass for navigation” towards transformation. We hypothesize that explorative research, process thinking, and a human-centered design approach can significantly contribute to the transformation of healthcare.


The five principles described in IZA are crucial for shaping effective and patient-centered healthcare. Here are these principles, along with detailed explanations:

1) Added Value for the Patient: Appropriate care is value-driven. Care is demonstrably effective and adds value for the patient. People, resources, and materials are used efficiently.

2) Together with the Patient: Both the patient and the healthcare professional share responsibility for healthcare decisions. This principle emphasizes the importance of collaborative decision-making, where the patient’s preferences, values, and experiences are taken into account alongside the healthcare professional’s expertise.

3) Right Care in the Right Place: Healthcare should be accessible, with care provided close to home whenever possible, reserving distant facilities for more complex treatments.

4) Focused on Health Instead of Illness: The quality of life should be prioritized, shifting the focus from merely treating illness to enhancing overall well-being.

5) Good Working Environment for Healthcare Professionals: Efforts should be made to reduce workload and administrative burdens, creating a supportive environment for healthcare providers.


In our lab, different projects will be initiated to address the challenges described in these principles of IZA. More specific contexts will be defined to guide the research and design activities per project. The holistic, multidimensional approach connecting projects in the healthcare ecosystem, will allow us to;

1) Learning through Human-Centered Design: Focus on designing solutions that meet the real needs of users, involving patients and healthcare professionals in the design process.

2) Conducting scientific evidence-based evaluations: Measure the impact of new processes and technical solutions within the system.

3) Educating and Training Stakeholders: Develop programs to educate and train healthcare providers, patients, and other stakeholders in process thinking and working for healthcare transformation.

4) Enhancing Research through Design Activities: Use design activities to integrate well-developed ideas into the healthcare context, creating prototypes for testing.