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Patient Tagalong - Map the Patient Journey

A patient journey provides a unique picture of how the local hospital environment operates through the eyes and ears of your patients.  Captured patient stories highlight areas that require improvement and can inform Key Performance Indicators.


Designate staff to follow patients

  • Designate a staff member to follow the journey of a patient for the length of their hospital stay 
  • Patients must be approached at admission and consent to the capture of their journey.

Make Observations

  • The staff member acts as a passive observer to the patients’ journey
  • Staff members should record:
    • Time
    • Information given to the patient/carer
    • Comments made by the patient/carer
    • Perception of ‘wasted time’ vs ‘value-add’ time
  • Think about the 8 Picker dimensions of what patients value.

Write Patient Story

  • Write-up the patient story as a step-by-step journey with insights into the patient experience at each step
  • Include direct quotes from the patient and/or the carer
  • Include behavioural observations re: emotional state of the patient
  • Identify what was good and bad about the story.

Present the Patient Story

  • Present the patient story to the Project Steering Committee
  • Highlight areas where the patient’s journey could have been improved
  • Identify how the patient journey can be improved
  • Compare your patient’s journey to the ‘ideal’ as described by the 'tob be' or ‘ideal’ model.

Use the information

  • Use the information to inform the development of Key performance inidcators (KPIs)
  • Repeat process during implementation to determine if subjective improvements are being achieved.


  • Two months for entire process.

Tools and Templates


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