For this service design project, our team worked with the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center (UPMC) Center for Quality Improvement and Innovation to identify design opportunities for Dr. Amin Kassam’s Neurosurgery Clinic. Due to being able to perform a rare brain surgery by going through the patient’s nose rather than cutting open the skull, Dr. Kassam’s once-a-week clinic is overwhelmed with patients.

Our team spent a fair amount of time at the clinic observing and interacting with patients. We worked closely with the staff and shared our process and insights with them every step of the way, which built trust and gained their support. This enabled us to gain access to patients in the exam room and interactions between Dr. Kassam, his staff, and patients. We also shared our concepts with the patients, iterating as much as we could to refine our ideas and final solution.


  • Melissa Cliver
    Interaction Design
  • Jamin Hegeman
    Interaction Design
  • Kipum Lee
    Interaction Design
  • Leanne Libert
    Communication Planning and Information Design
  • Kara Tennant
    Communication Planning and Information Design


  • Dr. Kassam welcome booklet
  • Concept and process documentation
  • Clinic Chat concept video

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Synthesizing Data
After many visits to the clinic, we had to sort hundreds of photos and observations.

Analyzing Data
Me, during a group meeting to synthesize the data.

Service Blueprint
Service blueprint of the patient experience highlighting opportunities for engagement.

Patient Feedback
We engaged with patients to get input and feedback as our concepts developed.

Generating Concepts
We generated and visualized numerous concepts through words and sketches.

Concept storyboards generating to solicit patient feedback.

Visualizing the Needs
In trying to understand the emotions and needs of the patients during their journey, we created this visualization, which we included in our final book for UPMC.

Concept rendering.

Welcome Booklet
Page layout from the welcome booklet we created as an artifact UPMC could implement right now.

Ideal State
Visualization of the ideal interaction between patients, Dr. Kassam, and his staff.

Clinic Chat
Page from the book delivered to UPMC.

Clinic Chat model
A system overview of Clinic Chat.

In the OR
A part of our research, we went to the OR to see Dr. Kassam perform brain surgery.

More process and solution photos