Co-production and co-design are central to Bridges, the way it came to exist, the way it operates and the way we innovate and evolve. All of our workshops are co-designed and co-delivered with people with lived experience. We are also involved in a number of co-design research and consultancy projects and you can read more about those here Here. We have a long history of recognising and addressing the power imbalance in healthcare interactions within our workshop program and these ‘Bridges goggles’ really help us to do very effective and authentic co-design projects.
Many of the people with lived experience who work and partner with Bridges have been involved in co-design elsewhere and have plenty of examples of tokenistic patient involvement where they are asked about something that has already been created and there is limited scope to be truly creative. Genuine co-design requires equal collaboration; where everyone has the confidence to contribute, listen and debate whatever comes up.
We tend to use a method of co-design called Experience Based Co-Design (EBCD) which involves creating a trigger film from patient interviews which is shown at a joint event and kicks off the co-design process. The trigger film really does act as an emotional trigger, everyone is fired up to get creative and to most importantly act upon what comes up. You can find out more about EBCD from one of it’s creators, Dr Glenn Robert, Senior Research Fellow at King’s College London, speaking here at one of our webinars in 2020.
Co-design doesn’t have to be a large-scale project. We’ve seen some wonderful examples of co-design from teams who have done the Bridges Program, for example asking their patients about how to re-design assessment paperwork. As a group of professionals you can make something exactly as you think it should be based on a wealth of clinical experience and still (!) it can miss the mark because you just can’t see ‘it’ from where you stand. As Clare, one of our Lived Experience Associates says ‘it’s those small tweaks that can lead to big changes, and it just wouldn’t work without either party, patients have that real, lived experience, but without knowing how the system works on a logistical day to day basis you feel like you are shooting arrows off in the dark’.
Happy co-designing! For more information on Bridges Co-design please contact us Here