Using the Discovery Interview to improve care
The Discovery Interview aims to explore and learn from, the impact of illness on people’s everyday lives. Evidence has emerged that taking this approach produces knowledge about needs that may have a significant impact on recovery and well-being.
One underlying principle is that the area where patients and carers understand best is the impact of their illness or condition upon their own lives. It is more difficult for them to make value judgements which require an understanding of their illness itself, or how services are run. Those delivering their care are acknowledged to be the experts in the illness and service provision. Using their own clinical and professional knowledge and experience to interpret what they hear from patients and carers, service teams are able to create better or new ways of meeting patients’ and carers’ needs.
Opportunities were therefore created for patients and carers to provide information unconstrained by thinking ‘in the box’ of their previous experience of care. In other words to shift the focus of enquiry from asking them service focused questions to encouraging them to talk about themselves. Discovery Interviews provide opportunities for patients and their carers to directly tell the story of their illness or condition using a framework — referred to as a ‘spine’ — that guides them through the key stages of their experience.
Discovery Interview Articles
Click HERE to view an article outlining the early work of the CHD Collaborative who pioneered the development of the Discovery Interview technique - using patient stories to inspire quality improvement within the modernisation agency collaborative programmes published 2003 in Journal of Clinical Nursing
Click HERE to view a series of papers on the Discovery Interview method, published in the International Journal of Older People Nursing, 2008, vol 3, pp. 206-222 which explored the experiences of older people and their carers in emergency and other urgent care settings. NHS Improvement (heart) were active partners in this collaborative study led by City University London..
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Discovery Interview Resources
Discovery Interview - Executive Summary - An evaluation of the Discovery Interview technique.