What healthcare can learn from Chevy

I’ve spent a fair amount of time in rental cars this year, and one thing I hate is trying to figure out the controls. They seem simple enough, except when you’re in a hurry. Whether it’s the cruise control, the wipers, environmental controls, the lights or the radio, it always takes me a while to get things ironed out. Kind of reminds me of the mess healthcare is in; you never know what systems you’re going to get.

All that changed when I was lucky enough to get a Chevy Cruz. There’s nothing particularly special about the car. It’s comfortable enough, has plenty of leg room, gets decent gas mileage and has enough pep to meet my needs, but that’s not the thing that caught my attention.

When I jumped into the car I noticed that all the instrumentation was nicely laid out, easy to read secondary to visual queues and gave me immediate feedback when I changed something. For example, when I changed the environmental controls the display in the dash told me whether the fan was on or off and where the air was coming from. When I turned the lights off and on I received immediate visual feedback as well. It was pretty slick.

It would be nice if healthcare systems were like that. Some of the stuff I’ve used in the pharmacy over the years was pure crap when it came to user interface design and useful feedback. Just sayin’.

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