Health TAPESTRY: co-designing interprofessional primary care programs for older adults using the persona-scenario method
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BACKGROUND: Working with patients and health care providers to co-design health interventions is gaining global prominence. While co-design of interventions is important for all patients, it is particularly important for older adults who often experience multiple and complex chronic conditions. Persona-scenarios have been used by designers of technology applications. The purpose of this paper is to explore how a modified approach to the persona-scenario method was used to co-design a complex primary health care intervention (Health TAPESTRY) by and for older adults and providers and the value added of this approach. METHODS: The persona-scenario method involved patient and clinician participants from two academically-linked primary care practices. Local prospective volunteers and community service providers (e.g., home care services, support services) were also recruited. Persona-scenario workshops were facilitated by researchers experienced in qualitative methods. Working mostly in homogenous pairs, participants created a fictitious but authentic persona that represented people like themselves. Core components of the Health TAPESTRY intervention were described. Then, participants created a story (scenario) involving their persona and an aspect of the proposed Health TAPESTRY program (e.g., volunteer roles). Two stages of analysis involved descriptive identification of themes, followed by an interpretive phase to extract possible actions and products related to ideas in each theme. RESULTS: Fourteen persona-scenario workshops were held involving patients (n = 15), healthcare providers/community care providers (n = 29), community service providers (n = 12), and volunteers (n = 14). Fifty themes emerged under four Health TAPESTRY components and a fifth category - patient. Eight cross cutting themes highlighted areas integral to the intervention. In total, 414 actions were identified and 406 products were extracted under the themes, of which 44.8% of the products (n = 182) were novel. The remaining 224 had been considered by the research team. CONCLUSIONS: The persona-scenario method drew out feasible novel ideas from stakeholders, which expanded on the research team's original ideas and highlighted interactions among components and stakeholder groups. Many ideas were integrated into the Health TAPESTRY program's design and implementation. Persona-scenario method added significant value worthy of the added time it required. This method presents a promising alternative to active engagement of multiple stakeholders in the co-design of complex interventions.
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