Despite the potential of eHealth services to revolutionize the way healthcare and prevention is provided many applications developed for patients fail to deliver their promise. Therefore, the aim of this study is to use patient journey mapping to explore post-discharge stroke patients’ information needs to propose eHealth services that meet their needs throughout their care and rehabilitation processes.
Three focus groups with younger (<65 years) and older (> = 65 years) stroke patients were performed. Content analysis was used to analyse the data. Stroke patients’ information needs was explored using patient journey model.
Four main events (discharge from hospital, discharge from rehab clinic, coming home, and clinical encounters) and two phases (at rehab clinic, at home) have been identified in patients’ post-discharge journey. The main categories identified in this study indicate that patients not only need to have access to health related information about their care and rehabilitation processes but also practical guidance through healthcare and community services. Patients also have different information needs at different events and during different phases. Potential supportive eHealth services were suggested by the researchers considering different parts of the patients’ journeys.
Patient journey models and qualitative analysis of patients’ information needs are powerful tools that can be used to improve healthcare from a patient perspective. As patients’ understanding of their illness changes over time, their need of more flexible support throughout the care and rehabilitation processes increases. To design appropriate eHealth services that meet patients’ information needs, it is imperative to understand the current care and rehabilitation processes and identify patients’ information needs throughout their journey.