Good Care Calls is a proposal for a service that provides caring phone calls to reduce costly hospital readmissions. Volunteer callers check on the wellbeing of recently discharged patients to promote healthy behaviors and ease emotional distress.
Every year, 2.6 million Medicare recipients are readmitted to hospitals at a cost of $26 billion. Using human centered design methods, I learned about the needs of patients and care providers to design a solution for reducing readmissions.
The neediest patients are often the most underserved. An effective solution must be affordable and quickly distributable, which is why Good Care Calls only requires patients to have a phone.
Patients opt-in to Good Care Calls at discharge, and their data is shared via the hospital’s electronic health record API. Students preparing for degrees in health services gain valuable experience as volunteer callers and also act as a triage service to busy clinics, flagging issues in the patient's EHR.