Our short courses have been created in collaboration with leading scientists and clinicians operating in the NHS.

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Design thinking in Health and Social Care

A different approach to problem solving - are you a health or social care professional who is asked to be more efficient in an ever demanding environment? Unlike other approaches to problem solving, Design thinking puts the user at the heart – it’s a collaborative, experimental, iterative process that can help revolutionise healthcare product development and service delivery.

Widely used in the commercial sector and often employed by progressive American healthcare providers, Design thinking is only now becoming recognised as an exciting, credible, alternative to traditional problem solving within the NHS.

Title: Creative Problem Solving: design thinking in health and social care
Dates: 26 and 27 November 2018
Times: 9:30am - 4:30pm
Location: St George's, University of London, Cranmer Terrace, London SW17 0RE
Cost: £150 (introductory offer)
Bookings have now closed. Please email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. to register your interest

Programme benefits

St George’s intensive two-day course in Design thinking is specifically designed for those working in health and social care. It will provide you with the knowledge and skills to reframe difficult issues and challenges and enable you to generate ideas to overcome them - an important skill in a system such as the NHS that has limited resources and is required to make ever greater efficiencies.

St George’s two-day course

The course is highly interactive, with participants invited to bring and discuss real life issues and problems with tutors and other participants from across the health and social care sector. We'll cover fundamental Design thinking methodologies and principles and explore examples where design has made or could have made an impact in healthcare settings.

The programme

  • Learn the key principles of design thinking to reframe issues as opportunities
  • Understand how to apply design thinking as a creative force to drive and foster innovation and change
  • Understand complex, intractable challenges through the eyes of users (people, patients, staff)

Key ‘how to’ topics

  1. How to empathise with users
  2. How to visualise and reframe problems
  3. How to generate ideas
  4. How to prototype and test solutions
  5. How to engage others through storytelling

How To

Top-up to a 15-Credit bearing course.

If you are interested in developing your skills to a higher level and wish to complete a 15 credit postgraduate module in Design thinking, we will be holding an extension two day course with assessment in July 2019 (cost of credited extension: £600).

Who the course is for

Anyone working with in health and social care and interested in change, improvement and generally making things better. Regardless of your role, age or specialism, whether you are a junior doctor, service manager, consultant, improvement manager, professor, scientist, or nurse, you'll get something out of this course - it will provide you with a new perspective on how to turn problems into opportunities.

"Design thinking offers user-centred and solution focused options for service development. As a clinician it has opened up new possibilities for me to understand need and develop responses in an iterative way that supports flexibility (trying a number of options and letting the solution emerge) engages users (by having real prototypes to test out) and reduces risk (by testing as you develop). All clinicians and managers should do this course."

Dr Paula Baraitser, Consultant in Sexual Health


Chris Howroyd
Chris Howroyd300wChris is a trained product designer and is passionate about products and services that make a difference to people’s lives. He has a breadth of experience of inspiring and managing design-led thinking in the NHS, local councils and industry. Chris has worked in both the private and public sector and has designed everything from catheters to sexual health services. He has managed new product development strategies that have identified new markets, challenged incumbent brands, improved user experiences and bred powerful cultures of innovation.

Chris holds an MPhil in Strategic Healthcare Design and in his role as Head of Health at the Design Council, he directed three national open innovation programmes. He has spent the last ten years working with frontline staff in the NHS, in Operating Theatres, on general medicine hospital wards, in GP surgeries, GUM clinics and A&E departments.He is Service Development Director at SH:24, the online health service nominated for the UK Design Museum’s Designs of the Year 2016. Chris is also a partner of Howdu, a design and innovation consultancy who specialise in untangling difficult issues in the health and wellbeing space. Working with the NHS and local authorities Chris continues to design better business models, products and systems - simultaneously improving the experience of users and the efficiency of services.

 Mollie Courtenay
Mollie300Mollie is a service designer specialising in healthcare. She began her career at Design Council using design-led approaches to tackle public health challenges and undertaking design research projects in social and maternity care settings across the UK. At SH:24, Mollie has met with hundreds of clinicians, receptionists and end users in order to develop award-winning, user-centred sexual health services which are commissioned throughout the UK. Mollie has previously led a multidisciplinary design and development team at Mindwave Ventures developing digital products and services for NHS Trusts, charities and national bodies. Mollie also gives time to projects that encourage students to apply design methodologies to real life briefs, such as the RSA’s Pupil Design Awards and a Communication Design lecture series on Behaviour Change at Central St. Martins.

 Oonagh Commerford
OonaghComerfordOonagh is a service designer interested in improving healthcare systems using design. She has a masters in Design and Healthcare from the Royal College of Art and Imperial College London. Previously worked on projects related to the role of design in social care, public health, and cancer care with organisations including the Design Council, Philips, and various partners within the NHS.





Last Updated: Friday, 28 September 2018 11:05