A Day in the Life of Dr. Jones

One in a series of ten data visualization posters created in 2015 by our analytics team here at Arcadia. Come by and see our new data visualizations at HIMSS 2016!

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About the Chart

“A Day in the Life” was born from a simple request our clinical consultants heard from a physician in a large hospital system: “If only management could spend a day in my shoes, and see what I have to go through…”

By tapping deep into the EHR systems, we can come pretty close.

Arcadia developed a tool to present a “day in the life” for providers and care teams, visualizing even the smallest activities captured in the EHR into an easily consumable timeline. The tool permits the user to flip quickly through multiple providers and compare their workflows, EHR usage habits, and support staff role alignment, answering the following questions:

  • Which care teams are not distributing work to support staff?
  • Who is staying up late documenting the day’s visits?
  • Which providers are consistently falling behind on their schedules?

In this visual, we see “Dr. Jones'” day from the perspective of the EHR. From left to right, we see the day stretched out from early morning until late at night. From top to bottom, each patient visit is represented by one row, with a black box representing the scheduled appointment time and a horizontal black line representing the actual duration of the patient visit. Provider interactions with the EHR are bounded in orange, those by the support staff are cyan, and every click of the EHR is represented by a small, vertical black line. We can also see how this day stacks up with Dr. Jones’ fellow providers on the bubble graph at the bottom, which charts documentation quality against time and clicks in the EHR; bubble size represents patient panel size.

Through this visualization, we see that Dr. Jones is near the top of the class in terms of documentation quality, but that comes at a cost of 16 hours spent and over 2,500 clicks in the EHR. We also see that Dr. Jones may not have enough time to complete the morning huddle, that appointment scheduling and drop-ins force Dr. Jones to work through lunch, that caseload often causes long wait times by the end of the business day, and that to meet those high documentation metrics, Dr. Jones must work late into the night to complete documentation. With this information, we begin to develop a far richer sense of what Dr. Jones and the rest of the support staff need to remain productive and better serve this community of patients.

Effective visualization of clinical activity through EHR systems can provide useful insights into clinical workflows as they actually happen. This visual information is easy to interpret and can be used at multiple levels of practice to identify best practices and opportunities for improvement. Integration of EHR audit tracking with other systems – clinical measures, claims, prescriptions, HR, etc. – allows users to explore a day in the healthcare setting from any number of perspectives, and spend a virtual day in the clinician’s shoes.


Data analysis, visualization, and poster design by Nick Stepro.