How an outcome system can contribute to greater patient satisfaction Research project

Including data from a patient’s perspective has been shown to contribute towards better treatment outcomes and greater patient satisfaction. Schulthess Klinik has been collecting data of this kind for many years now. The aim of our research project is to use an expert outcome system to capture this patient perspective and all other treatment-relevant data in a central system and make it available to doctors at the touch of a button. This allows them to better understand patients' specific health needs and tailor treatment to their individual needs.

"The expert outcome system is intended to analyse clinical and patient-related data immediately after it has been captured and display it in the system . This gives doctors new options when it comes to treating their patients.” 

Michael Oyewale, MSc ETH (D-HEST), Application Manager at Schulthess Klinik, PhD student at Erasmus Medical Center

Focus on data 

Medical intervention is based predominantly on the latest research findings as well as the in-depth knowledge and broad experience of individual doctors. Moreover, data from the patient’s perspective is becoming increasingly important. International studies have shown that the active involvement of patients in their treatment results in better health outcomes and thus increases patient satisfaction . This is precisely what outcome research is concerned with. It examines the success of treatment from the patient’s perspective and serves to optimise treatments and enhance patient satisfaction .

IT infrastructure for clinical and patient-related data 

To enable Schulthess Klinik to access the clinical and patient-related data collected over many years, an appropriate IT infrastructure was developed. An integral component is a new expert outcome system developed by an employee of Schulthess Klinik as part of his doctoral thesis. 

Personal experience counts

How effective was a treatment? In order to provide a comprehensive answer to this question, patients are asked about their complaints by means of questionnaires. After receiving a shoulder prosthesis, the research department will, for example, collect over 250 individual and subjective answers, plus almost twice as many clinical measurements, over the next ten years. The patient’s perspective and all other treatment-relevant data is collected in a central system and made available to doctors at the touch of a button. This enables them to more effectively classify patients' specific health needs and tailor treatment to their individual needs.

Examples for future everyday clinical practice 

The expert outcome system is future-orientated, because medical intervention is increasingly aligned with individual interests, i.e. patient preferences and patient experiences, even internationally. 

The ability to access a comprehensive library of clinical and patient-related data means:

For patients: Well-being. 
For doctors:
Doctors are always aware of the wishes and expectations of patients and can incorporate these into the treatment decision . 

For patients: Understanding 
For doctors:
Using comparable clinical pictures, the expected course of treatment can be displayed graphically and shown to the patient.

For patients: Knowledge. 
For doctors:
Doctors can compare the actual, individual progress of patientswith a previous group of patients of a similar age and the same sex as well as using other criteria . Abnormalities are identified immediately and appropriate therapeutic measures can be taken to alleviate symptoms if required.

Prototype testing 

For a few months now, a doctoral student at Schulthess Klinik, working in cooperation with the Erasmus Medical Center in Rotterdam, Netherlands, has been working on various use cases . Currently, doctors from the Hand and Shoulder departments are testing the first prototype of the expert outcome system. After successful completion of the pilot project, the new tool will be expanded to include additional departments and will be continuously expanded to include additional applications and functionalities by the end of 2025. This will give doctors and patients the best possible benefits.

Would you like to get involved in the future of medicine? 

One of the main areas of activity of the Wilhelm Schulthess Foundation is the advancement of research, always with the aim of enabling patients to receive the best possible treatment. By donating to our research fund, you are directly supporting scientific training, research and development in the field of orthopaedics  – a specific example being the  “How an outcome system can contribute to greater patient satisfaction” research project.  

Find out more about how to donate:

Contact us

Would you like to know more about this project or other opportunities to support projects from the Research Fund or and Patient Assistance Fund ? We are looking forward to hearing from you.

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